How to Work With a Designer

Not everyone has experience with working with an architect or designer, so in order to help potential clients understand the role we play in improving their quality of life, I put together a few postings to illustrate what we do. Hopefully these will help disperse of any stereotypes of our profession, and dispel the myths that have been created by recent years’ media developments.

An architect or designer can help you cut through all the distractions, consolidate all the realities, and present you with the potential of your space, beyond what you probably can yourself. But, it is not an autonomous process, where the designer goes off into some creative trance and – voilà! No, a successful project is always a close collaboration between client, designer/architect and builder. In order to serve our clients well, we do a lot of listening, take lots of notes, and strive to get to know who you are, learn of your beliefs, as well as your philosophy on life, and your preferences – all the while compounding and distilling all that information into a project that will make you happy for years to come.

The “carte blanche” method, so often seen in TV make-overs is not at all a realistic picture of what really happens. Sure, the end result may look fantastic, but that doesn’t mean that it functions in accord with the needs and desires of the people who are to use the space. Although Frank Lloyd-Wright once told a client whose roof was leaking to move his chair, most of us don’t have those kinds of diva hang-ups. Instead, we are trained problem solvers and removers of mental obstacles. Our job, as architects and designers, is to take what is in our clients’ minds, and help them transform it into a built environment that corresponds to those needs and desires. For posts on fees, process, faux-pas and more useful and interesting information, please click on the “Client Education” category on my blog.

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