Category Archives: Observations

Clients and where to find them

For a while now, I have been meaning to do a post on projects in progress

and I will,

when I come up for air.

But none of these PiPs (projects in progress) would be possible if there weren’t clients.

So where do they come from?

Last week I was at Officeworks printing some drawings for a current project and started chatting with the woman at the counter next to me.

‘Ohhhh, that’s a big block’, she said, glancing over, ‘where is that?’

Within 30 seconds we had established that she was looking to buy a block of land in the Dandenongs, that I was an architect, and that maybe fate had brought us together.  Maybe it had…

But while I’m waiting, let’s look at the origins of my clients this year:

  1. W+E Shoe Gallery (see earlier post) – partner delivered the mail to her old shop
  2. Living Cubed – referral from old business partner
  3. Inside Henry – friend of a friend
  4. Hornby of Plenty – friend of a friend (Same friend as 3. She has lots of friends)
  5. Cranked Macedon – contact via Architours Andy
  6. Thornbury Three – contact via Architours Esther
  7. Blazey of Glory (BoG) – follow on from 6.

So the moral of this short tale:

Smile and talk to the person next to you

>>>do this anyway<<<

Opportunities are all around you

If you are not out there you may not see them.


Transform – Altering the Future of Architecture

It’s been a long time between posts as I wait for a couple of projects to be completed, teaching winds up for another semester and life generally gets in the way of finishing a post, despite the drafts piling up…

BUT, Transform – the fantastic day long conference about ‘altering the future of architecture’ is certainly something someone interested in ‘redefining architectural practice’ would be remiss NOT to comment on. Especially as I actually even managed to be there.


So I have compiled my (and other’s) main thoughts (read *tweets*) from the day:

Privilege is invisible for those who have it. Dr Lori Brown

Consultation can be an exchange. Dr Lori Brown quoting MUF

We need to see opportunities to make change at all levels of practice. Shelley Penn

Do we acknowledge all the ways people practice architecture? Shelley Penn

Do you object to the term work/life balance? Everybody

Is change more likely to happen in good or bad economic times?

You have to have a life to be a good architect. Shelley Penn + Lee Hillam

Understanding where you are not so strong is the best path to leadership. William Dowzer

The channel has just been turned off on alternative modes of practising architecture, they have always been there. Dr Karen Burns

There has been a shift in the way we connect and collaborate. Sibling

What happens if we make our city domestic? Sibling

Someone has to be responsible for the soul of the city. Rory Hyde quoting someone I failed to note

Why don’t we have an award for best pro bono architecture or firm with the best gender equality? Dr Karen Burns

Should the development of the brief be part of core architectural services? question from the audience following presentation by Paula McCarthy

Perhaps class differences are a bigger issue than gender. Dr Karen Burns

One day I may even expand on these…If I group them that’s at least another 7 posts.
(and forgive me if I incorrectly attributed anyone).

Thank you so much Parlour for organising such a refreshingly open, honest and unpretentious investigation / discussion of what architecture is. And to everyone who partook for making it even more obvious that I am not alone.

Find our more about Parlour here

In a quiet moment we were playing ‘Guess Who – Pritzker Prize’ on instagram:
‘Are you a woman?’
Put down 1.5 / 35 tiles

Pritzker Prize

What’s in a (sur)name

At last I started reading Rory Hyde’s ‘Future Practice: Conversations from the Edge of Architecture’

IMG_4157 (598x800)

I am pleased to say I can quote something from the first paragraph of the Foreward by Dan Hill (I will read more, really):

Occupations were once so static we took our surnames from them

My last name is Freeman.
Perhaps my ancestors were slaves or convicts…
But I’d like to think they were redefining their practice even in the olden days.