Welcome to Future Talks by RTF – a platform where design stories come alive through engaging conversations with the trailblazers of the industry. Today, we are honored to present a luminary in the world of design, none other than the founder and Principal Designer of Studio Garrison, a name synonymous with innovation and timeless elegance.

Meet the visionary mind behind Studio Garrison, a design maestro who has meticulously crafted a one-man studio into a nationally acclaimed firm with a portfolio that resonates with prestige. With a keen understanding of the luxury market from every conceivable angle, our guest is not merely a designer but a strategic thinker who navigates the intricate landscape of design with finesse.

This individual’s ability to scale without losing sight of the minutest details is unparalleled, making each space not just aesthetically pleasing but also infused with a sense of purpose. While our guest is not confined to a singular aesthetic, their designs possess an unmistakable and instantaneous recognition.

Immersed in the design community with passion and dedication, our guest regularly takes the stage at conferences, earning well-deserved recognition for invaluable contributions to the industry. A recipient of the prestigious Golden Nugget award for interiors and various other design accolades, they hold a distinguished position as a judge at the KBIS award ceremony and proudly sit on Cambria’s advisory board.

Beyond the accolades and awards, our guest is a perpetual force in the realms of residential, hospitality, and commercial design. However, it’s their recent colossal endeavors that truly captivate the imagination – from orchestrating the design of an expansive four-star resort in Deer Valley, Utah, to the opulent suites and residential homes at the Four Seasons Vail, Colorado. These undertakings, marked by their sheer scale and diversity, exemplify the prowess and versatility that defines our guest’s body of work.

So, fasten your seatbelts as we embark on a captivating journey into the design philosophy and experiences of a true luminary. Join us in welcoming the visionary Founder and Principal Designer of Studio Garrison to Future Talks by RTF, where design stories are not just told but brought to life.

RTF: Hi Garrison, We are glad to have you as a guest on Future Talks by RTF. Thanks for joining us. What has been your approach towards design? How does Studio Garrison reflect it?

Garrison: I have a collaborative and holistic approach to design, where I work closely with the client and my team of designers to ensure that every aspect of the project is aligned with the client’s vision and goals. I also offer a comprehensive range of design services, from interior architecture to furniture and finishes, to ensure that every detail is taken care of. I enjoy working on a variety of projects, from residential to commercial and hospitality, and I always seek to bring a fresh and innovative perspective to each one.

RTF: What is your opinion on trends in design? Do designers shape trends or do the trends shape the approach of designers?

Garrison: Trends in design are constantly evolving and influencing the way create create and express our ideas. I think that designers shape trends and trends shape the approach of designers in a dynamic and reciprocal relationship.

On one hand, designers shape trends by introducing new concepts, styles, and techniques that challenge the status quo and inspire others to follow. Designers are often the pioneers and innovators of the design industry, who experiment with different materials, colors, forms, and functions to create original and distinctive solutions. Designers also shape trends by responding to the needs and preferences of their clients and the market, who demand high-quality, sustainable, and user-friendly products and services.

RTF: What is your idea of finding one’s design voice in a world full of ideas?

Garrison: My idea of finding one’s design voice in a world full of ideas is to be authentic, curious, and courageous. Authenticity means being true to oneself and one’s values, and expressing them through one’s design choices. Curiosity means being open to learning from others and exploring new possibilities and perspectives. Courage means being willing to take risks and challenge conventions and expectations.

RTF: Which has been the most rewarding project for you until today? And, what factors made it so?

Garrison: One of the most rewarding projects for me until today was the revitalization of my small hometown in Kansas. I was honored to be invited to provide direction and input on this project, which aimed to restore the vitality and charm of the town and to attract more visitors and residents.

Future Talks by RTF In conversation with Garrison Hullinger - Sheet1
Remodelling project in Portland_Garrison Hullinger
Remodelling project in Portland_Garrison Hullinger

The factors that made this project so rewarding for me were:

– The personal connection: This project was very close to my heart, as I grew up in this town and have many fond memories of it. I wanted to give back to the community that shaped me and to celebrate its unique culture and history.

– The collaborative process: This project involved working with a diverse and talented team of property owners, city leaders and local stakeholders. We had a lot of brainstorming sessions, site visits, and feedback meetings, where we exchanged ideas and learned from each other. We also engaged with the public and listened to their opinions and suggestions, which helped us to create a design that was responsive and inclusive.

– The creative challenge: This project was a complex and ambitious undertaking, as we had to balance between preserving the existing character and heritage of the town, and introducing new elements and functions that would enhance its livability and appeal. We had to consider various aspects, such as sustainability, accessibility, affordability, and aesthetics. We had to also be innovative and flexible, and adapt to the changing needs and circumstances of the project.

RTF: What advice would you give to emerging architects and designers who are looking to increase their chances of getting their work published? Are there any specific resources or platforms that you would recommend for architects and designers seeking publication opportunities?


– Design interesting and distinctive projects that showcase your creativity, skills, and vision. Editors are looking for projects that stand out from the crowd and have a strong point of view and a compelling story.

– Invest in high-quality photography that captures the essence and details of your projects. Photography is the first thing that editors see and judge, so make sure it is professional, clear, and appealing.

– Build relationships with editors, writers, and scouts who work for the publications that you are interested in. Follow them on social media, comment on their posts, send them personalized emails, and invite them to see your projects in person. Be polite, respectful, and helpful, and offer your expertise and insights.

– Enter competitions for exposure and recognition. Competitions are a great way to showcase your work to a panel of experts and peers and to win awards and prizes that can boost your reputation and credibility.

RTF: Can you talk about the role of digital tools and technology in your design process, and how they have influenced the way you approach architectural projects?


Digital tools and technology play a vital role in my design process, and they have influenced the way I approach design projects in many ways. Some of the benefits of using digital tools and technology are:

  • They allow me to create more accurate and realistic models and simulations of my project. 
  • They enable me to communicate and collaborate more effectively and efficiently with my clients, my team, and other consultants, such as structural engineers, MEP, and others. I can share and exchange information, feedback, and ideas in real time, and use cloud-based platforms and software to work on the same project from different locations.
  • They inspire me to explore new possibilities and perspectives and to experiment with different materials, forms, and functions.

RTF: What approach would you advise young design professionals to have to excel in the field? And what are some things to be wary of?


  • Take opportunities to work on varying projects that challenge and expand your skills, knowledge, and interests. Working on different types of projects will expose you to different design problems, solutions, and contexts, and will help you develop a versatile and adaptable design portfolio.
  • Embrace the opportunity to grow and learn from others who have more experience and expertise than you. Seek feedback and guidance from your mentors, peers, and clients, and be open to constructive criticism and suggestions. Learn from the best practices and examples of other successful designers, and apply them to your work.
  • Be passionate and curious about design, and keep yourself updated on the latest trends and developments in the field. Read books, magazines, blogs, and podcasts that cover design topics, and attend workshops, seminars, and conferences that offer design education and networking. Explore new tools and technologies that can enhance your design process and output.
  • Be creative and innovative, and do not be afraid to experiment and try new things. Do not limit yourself to the conventional or the familiar, but seek to create original and distinctive solutions that express your design voice and vision. Do not be satisfied with the good, but strive for the great.

RTF: Where does one find you when you’re not working?

Garrison: When I’m not working, I like to spend time at my favorite winery and tasting room, Alloro Wines, a boutique winery located in the Chehalem Mountains of Oregon, that produces estate-grown Pinot Noir and Chardonnays. I like to relax and enjoy the scenic views of their vineyard and gardens.

I also like to split my time between Portland, OR, and Palm Desert, CA, two very different but equally beautiful places. Portland is a vibrant and creative city, where I can find a lot of cultural and artistic activities and events. I love exploring the different neighborhoods, museums, galleries, and restaurants that Portland has to offer. Palm Desert is a sunny and serene oasis, where I can escape the rain and the stress of the city. I love spending time with friends in the desert and admiring the stunning landscapes and sunsets.


Rethinking The Future (RTF) is a Global Platform for Architecture and Design. RTF through more than 100 countries around the world provides an interactive platform of highest standard acknowledging the projects among creative and influential industry professionals.