Week of September 11, 2009

  • jim baer


    an interesting conclusion to an interesting problem. i liked the analysis of louis’ design progression. it shows how the design process is more fluid than most people think. it is not just here is THE solution. i am also always impressed by louis’ creativity and output.

    i am also glad that you addressed the importance of the input from the client. as i watched your concept design i kept thinking that you were making judgements based on a greater understanding of the clients’ lifestyles and priorities than was apparent in the design brief. it shows the subtle, nuanced judgements an architect has to make in the process of solving a problem while juggling all the needs, wants and desires of the clients, whether spoken or unspoken. not to mention all the technical and code requirements!

  • ersie

    Oh wow, everything you say in this segment really resonates with me right now. If you remember, we’re building a SFH in Switzerland (with an architect) and I was somewhat active on this site many months ago. My day job and our personal house planning has been taking up all my time since then though I do try to stop by once in a while to see what’s going on over here.

    The fluidity you mention can be both exciting and frustrating. It has happened to us a few times already that we embraced a new idea only to hit upon a snag during the detailed planning phase (physical limitations or cost or or or) and have had to return to the old idea or consider a new one. However, all in all, a good thing.

    Client constraints: We’re the clients and I’m sure our architects occasionally want to run away screaming. For whatever reason, it seems that some of my/our preferences are quite different from those of the other clients that they have had and I think on a couple of occasions they were rather taken aback. Of course, they’re always very polite and do a great job of conveying to us that they love our project :-)

  • John Brown

    It is good to hear from you. I have been curious about the progress on your house project. Thank you for the ‘client’ perspective on change.

    I tell my clients that the process is a little like skiing through moguls. You start out with a plan or route in your head, but by the time you get 1/3 of the way down you have either clipped an edge or lost your balance and the route needs to be adjusted – in real time. The trick is to know how to adjust your plan in order to get down the hill as gracefully as possible.