Ever wondered about the people behind the beautiful and well-designed buildings you see everywhere? We want to talk to you about one of the people behind those buildings-- the architect. Architects are responsible for the architecture and design of buildings. They do what they do because of their passion. However, before an architect can get to where he/she is, it takes years of practice, study, and self-refinement to get accredited. Even more so to become distinguished from other architects.
If you're a new architect or aspires to become one, it's essential to prepare early. Having a bit of knowledge will help you go a long way to avoid some pitfalls on the long, challenging, and enriching journey of being an architect. So, here are some things that all architects should know.
1. Understand that architecture intersects with other fields
When it comes to significant projects, architects are the creative masterminds. These projects have a broad scope and scale, making it necessary for architects to interact with many other professionals. Understanding Architecture will intersect with particular areas to unlock a deeper understanding of an architect's role. You'll also understand the desires, expectations, and needs of other talented people in the project.
Additionally, an architect needs to have talent, creativity, and hard work. Completing any project is essential, but having productive and meaningful interactions with bureaucrats, engineers, industrial designers and planners, investors, lawyers, and many others who play a crucial role in planning, zoning, and executing a project, is also just as important.
If you're still considering applying to an architecture program, you also must keep in mind that changing majors for undergraduates is extremely common. Sometimes, architecture isn't for other people, and instead, they subconsciously wish to become an industrial designer or a civil engineer. After all, these professions all have some things in common.
2. The importance of starting early and developing successful habits
Although this is mainly true for architects, this is a piece of applicable and good advice for everyone. The field of architecture demands a great deal of commitment and persistence over time. It is essential to hone your creative and technical skills, find the right school, and gain work experience. Also, it is advisable and especially prudent to carry a sketchbook with you. Architects often need to record and express their ideas in sketches and written form—master pencil and paper before moving on to higher-technology tools such as Photoshop or Autocad.
3. Look for the right program.
Studying architecture would entail picking the right accredited architecture school for your individual needs as a student. Look for a school or institution that has an accredited architecture program. It is also vital to research as much as you can about the application process and be aware of what the programs expect from their applicants. As a reminder, many programs prioritize students who have a strong background in mathematics, and some prefer those who have already pursued summer internships or similar applications. To become a successful architect, you have to be passionate and dedicated because there are five or six years of school and at least three years in professional placement programs and internships.
An aspiring architect must also be brave, have a healthy heart, and mind. Expect to deal with having your work evaluated, probed, and even attacked by peers and mentors-- and this can not be easy if you are not balanced intellectually, emotionally, and psychologically. Always keep in mind that everyone makes mistakes before they become great at something.
4. Understanding key movements
As mentioned earlier, architects interact with other professionals throughout a project. Art and architecture correlate with each other since an architectural plan is a reflection of the artistic world. It's essential to learn everything from classical architecture, which inspired the Roman architecture to Gothic architecture, which you can still see today, Renaissance architecture, Baroque, and eventually the flamboyant Rococo movement.
With so many available resources and technology, architects and artists experiment with modernism, postmodernism, structuralism, and other distinctive contemporary styles. Historically, the first line of architects had to work with the natural materials available to them. But with today's advancements in technology, architects already have more options such as steel construction and glass facades.
5. Develop your soft skills
If they ask you some of the technical skills that architects depend on, you'll probably mention sketching, logic, problem-solving, and mathematics. However, soft skills are just as relevant, such as sharing and combining ideas with others, explaining complex concepts in concise and straightforward terms, and sharing cramped spaces without your co-workers' issues.
6. Travel to far different places and absorb everything with open eyes
Of course, coming up with some very creative solutions to both uniquely local and universal design problems is something architects should always consider. Traveling will help offer new insights into things and the methods they used to construct it. Because of traveling, you'll find something you've never seen before-- it doesn't matter if you're sketching the skylines of an iconic metropolis such as Chicago or New York. Or awestruck by historical sites such as the Taj Mahal or the StoneHenge-- traveling will help you discover new approaches and ideas while immersing yourself in the culture that they originated.
7. Stand on the shoulders of giant personalities.
All architects can leave an indelible footprint on the world, and this is through their works. Some architects even build a notable legacy to become icons in their own right like Frank Gehry and Phil Kean. To become a master architect, you've got to have your own set of lessons to impart to the next generation of architects.
Architects work not just because they are required but also because they are predominantly curious beings in the word's best sense. They want to know everything and this is a good thing because they need to know it all.
In today's world, architects are essential when designing and ensuring buildings are sturdy enough and without any complications. Moreover, being an architect is a never-ending learning experience. So, if you're an architect or aspiring to be one, you must take it upon yourself to continually learn and grow.
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