Friday, 10 December 2010

101 Things I didn't learn in Architecture school.

My pick of the original list by Guy Horton & Sherin Wing on Archdaily.

5] Once you leave architecture school not everybody cares about architecture or wants to talk about it.

6] All eating habits and diets acquired during school should be jettisoned.

8] The rush and exhilaration you experience in studio may be inversely proportional to how much you will enjoy working for a firm.

9] It’s architecture, not medicine. You can take a break and no one will die.

12] The industry underpays. Push for what you are worth.

18] Get the biggest monitor you can.

19] Do not, however, ask for two monitors. Even though it makes you look like a bad-ass you will be expected to do twice the amount of work.

22] Be careful with emails. If in doubt, don’t send.

24] Be cautious of “opportunities” that do not pay.

30] There are no architectural emergencies that should make you completely give up your life on the outside. That may have been the ethos in studio, but don’t carry it into the office.

31] Be suspicious if your firm expects you to work long hours of overtime for no compensation. Be doubly suspicious if they justify it by saying things like, “It’s just part of the learning curve” or “We had to go through this, too.”

40] If a principal of a firm sees making coffee or moving boxes as beneath him/her, consider looking for another office.

41] If a principal doesn’t say good morning when you say good morning to him/her, consider looking for another office.

42] When firms advertise themselves as think tanks or research labs, ask them specifically what it is that they do. And most importantly, make sure they pay. Well.

45] Architects are in a service industry. They provide services to clients. 

52] Be cautious about applying theory to space.

55] Read books with words, not just pictures.

58] Do not date an architect unless you are certain he/she is able to maintain a healthy life outside of architecture.  

59] Architects should not intermarry. Inbreeding is not good for the gene pool.

62] Architects who do not build things also have important things to say and should be listened to.

64] Do not obsess about sustainability to the exclusion of other factors.

68] Archi-babble does not make you sound cool.

69] Keep in touch with everyone you know, especially if they aren’t in architecture.

70] In fact, make friends who are not architects.

73] The economically distressed urban zones you can afford while in school are not gentrified just because you and your friends have moved in.

74] If you must read Italo Calvino, read more than just Invisible Cities. 

89] Architect’s web pages are often out of control and take too long to load.

90] In one’s life there are a finite number of all-nighters one can pull. You probably used them all up in school.

91] Understand the contexts from which modernism arose.

92] When the economy is good architects can rely on experience to run firms, but when the economy is bad they need advanced business skills they may not possess.

93] Architecture is dependent on boom and bust cycles.

94] Good design is not necessarily the most important factor in running a successful architecture firm.

96] In a corporate firm, those at the top are not necessarily the best but they may have been there the longest.

97] Being good at software does not make you a good architect. 

99] Many architects do not live in houses designed by themselves or other architects.

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