Introduction – The Midnight Charette is a podcast series curated by the Second Studio. In this podcast series, co-founders of FAME Architecture and Design architects David Bruce Lee and Marina Bounderonnet converse on live topics related to architecture and design. This architect duo in their The Midnight Charette #121 titled Is Architecture Worth It? Hard Truths For Aspiring Professionals, answer to the most wondered question of aspiring architects.

To resolve some of those aspired questions, The Midnight Charette has chosen to speak on the post from an architect forum thread, written by a 15-year-old aspiring architect, where the author asks about the pros and cons of studying architecture and making a career in this profession, and further wonders how one can prepare for architecture school beforehand, consequently inquiring if pursuing architecture is worthwhile or not.

The Midnight Charette

Podcast for Architects: The Midnight Charette #121 - Is Architecture Worth It? Hard Truths for Aspiring Professionals - Sheet1
The Midnight Charette_ (no date). https://soundcloud.com/midnightcharette.

Every aspiring architect wanting to pursue architecture in any artistically profound architecture school, wonders if the decision of them choosing this profession is worth it or not. Some inquire about financial stabilities, some wonder about professional integrity, and some ask about the availability of job opportunities in the community. The Midnight Charette has discussed all of these questions in this podcast, by making it more exclusive by adding about their ventures in architecture. They have tried to provide a mindful solution to each of these questions from their analysis and have managed to provide an insight into the architecture profession to such aspirants willing to become an architect.

The Midnight Charette #121 – Is architecture worth it? Hard truths for aspiring professionals

Podcast for Architects: The Midnight Charette #121 - Is Architecture Worth It? Hard Truths for Aspiring Professionals - Sheet2
The Second Studio (2019) The Midnight Charette #121 – Is architecture worth it? Hard truths for aspiring professionals_https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzs9_9uxuek.

We always eagerly question the cons of the desired profession before choosing that profession, as it eventually helps us decide the right direction. Hence, to clarify some of the unseen difficulties that architecture professionals come across, The Midnight Charette primarily proceeds to discuss Wages, Annual income, the Depletion of the creative side in the professional practice, and the gap between the learnt chapters in architecture school and studio practice. These aspects of architecture are substantially unknown to aspirants wanting to enter this architectural background and after finding out these sides of architecture during the course or schooling in architecture, students may find themselves in a disrupted and devastated situation. The architect duo in this Midnight Charette segment showcase a clear image of architecture. Just like architecture, every profession has their pros and cons hence, this Midnight Charette segment honestly exhibits the cons of the architecture profession and then proceeds to venture on the desirable and creative side of architecture.

Infusion of creativity 

While adding to the pros of architecture in this Midnight Charette, David acknowledges the exploration of individuality one learns while studying architecture. He says many experienced professionals who have studied architecture admit that even if you don’t end up becoming an architect, architecture schooling helps in sculpting your critical and creative thinking, by its rigorous education and provides architecture graduates a confidence to explore their creativity and technicality in their chosen profession. Learning a new language of graphics, physical model making, and presentation skills in architecture school, becomes a boot camp for the mind. 

C.A.R.E Design Cell – CARE School of Architecture

Podcast for Architects: The Midnight Charette #121 - Is Architecture Worth It? Hard Truths for Aspiring Professionals - Sheet3
C.A.R.E Design Cell – CARE School of Architecture (2020)_https://care.ac.in/architecture/care-design-cell-2/.

This Midnight Charette segment also busts the myth of the intense connection between math and architecture, while appreciating the genuine balance created in design after acquiring this knowledge of math. This Midnight Charette also tells aspirants about the pros of learning creative skills in architecture schools like sculpture, woodworking, and photography, and how it benefits credit scores. As more exposure to creativity generates more critical thinking and helps in problem-solving approaches in designing, this Midnight Charette informs aspirants to explore these different creative niches before entering architecture. While recommending this, Marina talks about the creative techniques she learned before entering the school of Architecture and how they helped her in her designing years. She also suggests aspirants to explore their creative side in live tools and mentions their benefits.

Prenotions of architecture 

Architect working on software 

Podcast for Architects: The Midnight Charette #121 - Is Architecture Worth It? Hard Truths for Aspiring Professionals - Sheet4
NCircle Tech | Shaping the Future of BIM with Autodesk Revit (Dec 27, 2021)_https://ncircletech.com/blogs/shaping-the-future-of-bim-with-autodesk-revit.

In this episode of Midnight Charette the architect duo also discusses how while gathering the base knowledge of architecture before entering in school of Architecture, many aspiring kids end up learning software. Ultimately, they create a notion about architecture before actually studying it. Hence, in the first two years of architecture school, professors focus on breaking these prenotions by adding value in teaching the creative side of architecture. Hence, this Midnight Charette suggests aspirants to not learn these prenotions and anticipate learning these technical studies in the course of architecture after accumulating enough creative guidance. This Midnight Charette presents some demerits of learning software in the beginning and how it impacts on adding constraints to creativity. This Midnight Charette also recommends aspirants to avoid learning the software beforehand and instead just warming up by learning creative niches.

Master key to becoming a mindful designer 

Balkrishna Doshi Architecture for the People exhibition | Floornature

Podcast for Architects: The Midnight Charette #121 - Is Architecture Worth It? Hard Truths for Aspiring Professionals - Sheet5
Balkrishna Doshi Architecture for the People exhibition  | Floornature (no date)_https://www.floornature.com/balkrishna-doshi-architecture-people-exhibition-14591/.

While addressing all these questions, this Midnight Charette showcases the most beneficial technique that helps in mindful designing. This Midnight Charette suggests aspirants to become more observant. Being attentive in this creative field will help you get the unschooled knowledge and eventually build your architectural narration to upgrade the design. Directing attention to people, places, materials, and behaviors will warm up critical thinking and creative ideologies. The observations of interactions of the world with the built environment will help in the study of architecture. Hence, while admitting this, Midnight Charate advises to be more attentive in public scenarios and to observe the cultures and backgrounds of these live scenarios, instead of pre-learning the building techniques.

Role of an architect

Architects | WorkBC

Architects | WorkBC (no date)_https://www.workbc.ca/career-profiles/architects.

Some people think that, architecture is something related to math and technicalities, while others think that it’s a pure creative field. The Midnight Charette in their discussion, describes the role of the architect as to create a balance between both technical and creative sides of the world. Though pure technical aspects can be learnt through civil studies and creativity can be explored through artistic studies, architecture is the only profession that holds the marriage of both of these extreme entities. Hence, while defining the role of an architect, this midnight charette tells that an architect’s primary aim is to reinvent built realities with their perspectives.

Conclusion

The entire podcast successfully briefs aspiring youth who desire to be part of the architectural community, by presenting bittersweet gains of pursuing architecture. Architecture is a complex and honest profession, it generally uplifts the lives of both, the architects who design the realities and the people engaged in those built realities. Hence, to bear these responsibilities of architecture, aspirants need to warm up their minds before entering into it and this is the conclusion of this Midnight Charette podcast.

References

The Second Studio (2019b) The Midnight Charette #121 – Is architecture worth it? Hard truths for aspiring professionals. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzs9_9uxuek

Author

Manjiree, Introvert at heart, but a person who loves to express her narratives like an extrovert. The term “hungry learner” may not fully succeed to explain her philosophy, but could give you a tiny teaser of her curious mind. Currently, in the process of exploring the true sustenance of architecture.