What is Interior Design?
Interior design as defined by Wikipedia is the art and science of enhancing the interiors, sometimes including the exterior, of a space or building, to achieve a healthier and more aesthetically pleasing environment for the end user. An interior designer is someone who plans, researches, coordinates, and manages such projects. Interior design is a multifaceted profession that includes conceptual development, space planning, site inspections, programming, research, communicating with the stakeholders of a project, construction management, and execution of the design.
Interior Design is an emotional, creative aspect of design, this is what often draws people to apprentice themselves to this exciting discipline. Good interior design adds a new dimension to a space. It can increase our efficiency in the way we go about our daily lives and it adds depth, understanding and meaning to the built environment. Thoughtful and well-crafted design makes a space easier to understand and experiencing such a space lifts the spirit, too. It is, therefore, not just about the aesthetic; it is a practical and philosophical discipline. Beautiful spaces betray a logical and rational questioning of the status quo and can be an honest attempt to find new and exciting ways to lead our lives.
Who is an Interior Designer?
While Architects use planes such as walls, floors, ceilings to define the volumes (spaces) that combine to make up a building. They are trained to design structures from scratch. They will take intellectual and practical considerations into account, and the building design will be informed by its location. Some architects however limit their involvement in this, while others will also plan furniture layouts in detail and create decorative schemes.
Interior architects are generally concerned with taking existing structures i.e interior spaces and reforming them to suit specific functions. Within the design process they usually pay a great deal of regard to the previous life of a building, and usually allow this knowledge to provide some connection between the origin of the building and the purpose of the newly created interior.
Why become an Interior Designer?
Being an interior designer puts you in a privileged position. You are trusted by the client and, in the case of commissions by private clients, you have intimate access to their homes and way of life. You are given freedom to create spaces that will become an everyday part of their lives. You can propose radical planning solutions that may overturn preconceptions. According to the budget, you will source and curate all the elements that make up the interior space. You can select beautiful pieces of furniture, interesting and unusual finishes, and color schemes that together create drama, serenity, or whatever other mood the client wants for their space.
For a creative personality all of this is satisfying in itself, but the problems that the global community will face through the coming decades offer lots of opportunities to try our creativity further. Current ways of working and living will change, and whether these changes turn out to be sudden and dramatic or slower and more subtle, changes in lifestyle will mean that designers are required to navigate new landscapes and propose alternative routes for clients to allow them to meet their commitments as part of the new global order, whilst still maintaining a sense of well-being derived from their immediate surroundings.
What makes a Good Designer?
Interior design is a subject that it is easy to be passionate about, people that venture into it are skilled and creative people, but being organized does not always come naturally to a creative personality. It is, however, a trait that all designers would do well to cultivate, as there is so much more to the business of design than just designing. Being organized is probably the most important facet of a professional attitude, though not the only one. To help with this, one of the first things to be done on a project is to create a project plan that shows the tasks that need to be addressed in order to successfully complete the project.
Qualities of a great Interior Design
- Artistic Ability: A great designer has a natural artistic talent and is skilled in a variety of art techniques.
- Awareness of Audience: A great designer is aware of his or her audience and tailors the work to meet the expectations of that particular audience.
- Communication: A great designer has excellent communication skills. They are good listeners and able to garner what a client is expecting. They are able to engage in meaningful conversations with clients to ensure both parties are in agreement of the work that is being done.
- Creativity: A great designer is very creative and able to develop new, innovative ideas for projects. They are always thinking of different approaches and techniques.
- Eye for Materials: A great designer has an eye for color, texture, fabric, space, and other elements that go into various designs. They are aware of the extensive variety of materials available and understand what works well in particular projects.
- Humility: A great designer has a strong sense of humility and recognizes that people have varying tastes. They are not afraid of criticism and can handle recommendations for change.
- Problem Solving: A great designer has keen problem solving skills. When snags arise in design, they are able to quickly and calmly develop a solution.
- Team Player: A great designer works well with others. Often, designs require the input of other designers, and a great designer must be able to work well with anyone involved in the design process.
- Technical Skills: A great designer has a wide variety of technical skills. They are able to use computer programs to aid in the design process, as well different manual design techniques.
- Vision: A great designer has an excellent sense of vision and can grasp what it is a client is asking for. A great designer is able to visualize the end result and set a clear goal.