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Could You Be An Architect?

 

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Do you have what it takes?

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Architects are generally proficient at five things: drawing, math, language, creativity and hard work. The following are questions you might ask yourself to determine if architecture is right for you.

Do you like people?

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Although architects have clients, employees, peers and lots of meetings, they also spend a lot of time alone focused on sketching, writing, drawing, making models, and problem solving. The profession lends itself more to introverts and extroverts.

Are you impulsive?

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Architects are problem solvers and tend to think then act, not the other way around. Good solutions take time because ideas reciprocate and evolve. Success depends on well thought out solutions not shooting from the hip.

Are you a good listener?

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Architects are good listeners, and if not, they take good notes. Clients share the most intimate of details and hire the architect in search of a custom built solution. It's the architect's job to listen, take notes and respond something very unique.

Are you creative?

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Architects are creative. They explore and invent. They get bored easily and think outside the box. Conventional wisdom is that creativity is innate. Contemporary thinking says creativity can be learned. Both are true.

Are you humble?

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Architects aren't known to be very humble. However, a good rule of thumb is to work with people that are smarter than you are. Architects work with professionals like structural engineers, mechanical engineers, landscape architects, interiors experts, general contractors and the list goes on.

Do you like to draw?

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You don't have to be an artist to be an architect. But you do need to convey ideas quickly to clients. Hand sketching is a dying art that turns a good architect into a better one.

Do you like math?

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The architect should be good at math. Not necessarily because they’re doing mathematical calculations all day, but because they deal with numbers quite a bit. Whether it’s dimensional relationships or monetary ones.

Are you an engineer or designer?

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Would you rather dream the impossible, or make sure it's possible? Architects have big ideas and engineers make sure they work. Both are creative designers but engineers use math and physics while the architect is a skilled problem solver.

Can you read, write and speak well?

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Architects do a lot of writing and almost as much talking. They must be thorough and concise. They also sell themselves to some extent. They're definitely not the "door to door salesperson" type, but they've got to be an effective, genuine communicator.

Can you use a computer?

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Architects use a variety of Computer Aided Design (CAD) software, Building Information Modeling (BIM) software, Word, Excel, Photoshop, Illustrator, and other software programs. The earlier you get acquainted with these programs the better.

Can you see objects in your minds eye?

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Architects imagine solutions and visualize buildings. They translate two-dimensional information into mental three-dimensional objects. Some sit and sketch something in order to see it more clearly, while others can conjure an accurate mental image. Both are important.

Are you decisive?

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Architects make quick decisions on a job site. If they don't it effects the confidence an owner or contractor have in their abilities. It can also slow a job down quite a bit.

Are you conscientious?

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College for the young architect is hard and the practice of architecture is even more difficult. It can take at least ten years to become a licensed architect. And the professional is expected to be timely and accurate. Procrastinators don't last very long in the profession.