on being an artist AND an architect

So there’s this new idea i have for a series of posts… let’s call it “on being an architect series”.

cheesy? um yes.

For all of you who are wondering what the heck I mean, don’t worry, I’m wondering too.

let me just say that I’m working through a few things here. I just need to get it out. it may take me a while though.

first things first. i just saw these two articles in the last week:

1. in Princeton Magazine:: {remember where that ad was?}

2. in Traditional Home:: {a fav. what can i say?}

both of these articles were about the same man. the same architect. Michael Graves.

You’ve heard of him. Even if you think you haven’t, you have. Remember the really cool line of Target products by him? {if you click HERE or on the Princeton Magazine link you’ll see the fameous tea kettles that i’m sure you’ll recognize}

Product Image Michael Graves Easyfill Tea Kettle

{image via Target.com}

Anyway, both of the articles are talking about his life, his home and his art. {not so much his architecture… but there’s a little of that too…mostly in the 2nd one}. This man is brilliant. His architecture is mostly beautiful, his floor plans alone are to die for, and i love that he has a product line and he’s even designed furniture. He’s one of those guys that we learned about in architecture school who I’d always thought would always be too far away and too high up to ever get close to…

but folks… he LIVES in Princeton!

His architecture firm is. in. PRINCETON….

i even applied to work there… i walked into his office! Alas, it was a bad time in the economy… so no luck. but still… it got me a little ruffled just to walk into his office!

But that’s all fluff.

What i find MOST interesting in these two articles is that he loves to paint.

He said in one of his articles:

“I wasn’t one for making up buildings when there were no buildings to do. Instead, I would paint.”

{image via Traditional Home}

That’s what he does!

He’s an architect that paints! Not only that, but he’s a great artist!


***light bulb***

great architects can also be great artists.

Oh  Michael Graves you have just ruffled my world just a little bit more.

Dear Michael Graves:: you are a great architect and yet you allow your passion for art to be a part of who you are too! you didn’t “choose”. You’re doing both! {and very beautifully i might add…}

Please note that I’m not comparing myself to the great Michael Graves…I know I won’t be a great architect or artist. Actually, I will really just plan on being a no name, nobody, just little ol’ me.…

but at least I can justify my love for both designing buildings and people’s homes as well as my love for art.

Sometimes I would get frustrated that I seem pulled in so many ways. Sometimes while sitting in front of the computer all I can think about is getting out my paintbrush… sometimes I can’t sit down to paint because I’d rather be on my computer getting into the details of something or making a picture perfect on photoshop…

In truth… architecture is an art. It’s a fine art with lots of detail and lots of little tiny things to think about. You have to be well rounded and understand things from how to build a foundation; to how to detail a wall section; to what interior finishes are best for what space; and how to detail a kitchen cabinet down to the finger joint.

But all of these things are just details. and sometimes… just sometimes… i just hate the details.

SO when i feel like letting go… i paint. {ya, you remember this post?}

i feel so wobbly and confused on these legs of mine sometimes. i feel so lost in trying to figure out what i’m suppossed to be doing some days…which way to go…do i have a way to go? what do i do? who am i?

BUT now i’m a little {just a little, mind you}more confident in what I’m doing… because there’s a “great architect” out there who does the exact same thing.

Heck. Someday I’d love to design furniture too.

{probably just my own though… :)}

i’m kinda, just a little,  like you, Michael Graves, my friend, who i have yet to meet… {hey, it could happen! P-town is pretty small!!}


thanks, friends, for putting up with my rant.





ps:: some of the other ideas for what to talk about in this category are::

  • why you should hire an architect-not just a builder
  • the secret “professional” degree.
  • how to write like an architect… i know you all want to learn that secret 😉
  • on the importance of space planning.
  • what LEED means- how you can be green anyway
  • anything else that an architect in training could ramble on about…

these are just ideas anyway. who knows if i’ll ever actually talk about them… but it’s worth a shot!

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