Questions and Answers
Where do you start when planning your designs?
For me, design always starts with the client. But when the client is not a known entity, I place myself in their position; what do I want, how do I want to live and what is the quality of the experience? This approach always resonates with the end user, and I ensure that I have the flexibility to manipulate and customise the space to achieve the desired outcome.
Why is customisation important for buyers? How have you applied that to your designs?
Customisation allows buyers to differentiate their home; to add their own ‘signature’. In a project such as this I believe in making allowances for flexibility in detailed design and, to some extent, in the general planning to allow for this customisation.
Your precinct faces south. How has this been considered in your design thinking?
Access to northern light has been introduced into the roof design, to pull natural light into the upper floor common areas, allowing it to spill down the stairwell into living areas on the ground floor.
Aesthetic beauty and functionality are both fundamental to design. How have you ensured both are achieved simultaneously?
I believe that in this type of contemporary architecture, functionality leads to beauty. By considering the requirements of the brief rationally and applying an understanding of the appropriate materials and products to the situation, beauty is achieved.
What rules have you broken to make your designs truly unique and contemporary?
It is a fluid process, where the result of rational decisions about specific items are perceived in how they contribute to the tangible whole. The aim is to make the individual decisions contribute positively to the whole; if they do so, then they are beneficial. In this sense there are no ‘rules’ other than to ask if a decision benefits the final outcome, and to follow the answer.
How much is the local area lifestyle incorporated into your design thinking?
There is a vibrancy in East Victoria Park and on Albany Highway that is irrefutable. The project is a direct reading of that lifestyle; community, access, simplicity and ease of living allowing one to take advantage of all of the amenities in the area. Just far enough away to be quiet, but close enough to walk into the vibrant streets of the area.
East and Co. is a true collaboration between top architects and designers. How do you think the product has been elevated as a result?
In this case, I think the contributing designers were selected partly based on similar attitudes towards higher density living and potential for it to have positive lifestyle outcomes.