era | PART 1 Gather Information for Your Architecture
in the process to design and build architecture specific to you.
ask questions and find answers
Gathering information is essential to the success of your architecture.
All of the information you gather works together to inform your unique architectural language in order to make architecture specific to you. The more information you gather now, the less surprises you will have along the way.
This is a big one.
It may seem like the most insignificant part of the process, after all, isn’t it all about BUILDING your architecture?
But how do you know how to build your architecture if you haven’t worked it out yet?
And how do you work it out before gathering all the information you can to inform what it is?
If you just start digging you will hit two problems pretty quickly:
What are you going to build? You will stand there with the shovel not only wondering where to break the first piece of soil, but also what you will you do after that.
The other thing you will hit is a pipe in the ground, or some other unexpected surprise.
However, if you spend some time, right at the beginning of things, to gather all of the information you can, the information will help you design your architecture and you will be prepared for as many little things as you can before you put that shovel in the dirt.
But can’t you just start designing and go from there?
But to be honest, I’ve tried it, and not only does it take longer because you’re not sure which direction you’re heading in and how to make decisions about where to put what or what to put where, the design you end up with at the end of the day has two problems:
It is not necessarily a design that suits you - what you want or what you need. You may surprise yourself because what you think you want may not actually be what suits you best.
You may have missed some information to let you know that that pipe I mentioned earlier is located right under where you want to put your architecture and it cannot be moved.
Don’t jump in.
Prepare yourself by asking questions and learning about a few things.
Ask a Question - Find an Answer
This is the information I start collecting at the beginning of every project:
PURPOSE The Why
Why are you starting out to make architecture? What is your end goal?
This is the reason you are making your architecture and identifies what it is you would like to achieve at the end of the day.
PLACE The Where
Where are you making your architecture?
This is every thing you can learn about where your architecture will be. It is ever thing you can see and every thing you can’t - all the little things above ground and every big thing below.
PEOPLE The Who + What
Who are you? Who are the people who will be sharing your architecture?
What do you want and what do you need in your architecture to create the lifestyle you are after?
This is where you learn about yourself to find out what it is that your architecture needs to suit you best.
PROGRAM The Numbers
What is your budget and what is your time frame?
This is important to get out in the open early, so that you can incorporate it in your architecture to make sure what you are designing and building works for your numbers.
PARTS The Products
What materials would you like to build your architecture with? What suits the place you are in?
This is your every day, so think about what you would like to touch and feel every day. If you start to think about these now, you can include them in your design to make architecture specific to you.
Architecture is very honest.
You just can't hide anything, so don't try to ignore anything or pretend it will go away because if you don't find out about it now, it is more than likely going to show itself to you at a very inconvenient moment further down the track. Such as that pipe you didn't know was there until you put your spade through it.
Bring it all out and lay it on the table to see what it all is and how it fits together.
There are tools to help you gather information, but that is a conversation for another day :)
For you to Save
This is the first part in the process to design and build architecture.
If you would like to see how this part fits within the process, you may be interested in a little book I have written that sets out the Process in one place. It is a guide and workbook to help you through each step in your architectural journey.
The process is summarised in this little blog post - era | the Process to Design + Build Architecture.
Each part in the process will also be broken down into its individual steps right here in this little blog - so keep checking in to see the whole set!
Til next time!