When I was in high school trying to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up, and while doing research in the small school library for a paper I needed to write, I found an article that described Architecture as a “Social Art.” It implied that Architecture was an art form, but unlike most things identified as art, it had an intrinsic social purpose, beyond just aesthetic appreciation. I loved to draw and math was my favorite subject at that point. It was assumed in my neck of the woods that if you could do college prep math, and were going to college, engineering would be the way to go. Finding out that you could actually make a living drawing, coloring, playing in the dirt; and using formulas and math appealed to me. This simple, initial inspiration for what would become, to this point, a 30 year career as an architect, matured into what has been the central premise behind what makes me tick as a professional and as a human being:
Encouraging, Inspiring and Leading People and Organizations to Grow.
The most enjoyable thing about what we do as architects and designers of the built environment is that we get to learn so much about all facets of life through the work that our clients do in their businesses and organizations. We have to get to know them, their goals, aspirations and needs in order to design the buildings and spaces that facilitate their services. And having a little ADD, the variety of the types of people and organizations we get to work with always keeps us curious and inspired as we delve into learning from them about what they do for the communities they serve. So, being December, the month of my birth, and the month of gratefulness for the past year, I want to share some of the “ornaments” we hang on the tree of our experience and growth at K4. Our tree at home and at my family home before that, was decorated with ornaments that were not only beautiful, but also have a story to tell; a “social” element that underlies their existence. And so it is with the projects we complete in a given year; there is a story, a client’s story, behind the finished project.