More stories about PERSPECTIVE

  • all's well that starts well

    I remember being intrigued by a story one of my design teachers told me in the early 1980s, after a trip to Japan. He'd been meeting there with a potential client for more than two years when he finally realized no legal contract was forthcoming. It turne

  • on the edge of the prairie

    I arrived as a newcomer to the Midwest—not from the East Coast or from Europe, as did many early settlers to this place, but by an opposite, eastward migration. My journey brought me from the Pacific Northwest coast to the headwaters of the Mississippi Ri

  • what i saw at the evolution

    Residential design and construction have taken a dramatic track over the decade of

  • a country of craft dodgers

    As a furniture maker who was extensively trained as an architect, I spend much time pondering the relationship between small details and big spaces. In the process, I have become obsessed with the demise of craftsmanship in our building economy and cultur

  • sense and sustainability

    Designing for sustainability can be one of the most important and challenging architectural tasks. Through modern engineering, architects have been able to produce reasonably comfortable interior conditions in almost any climate.

  • custom for less

    My wife, Sherry, and I had embarked on an experiment: to design and build a 2,800-square-foot custom home on a budget of $50 per square foot (or $300,000, including land costs). Although it seemed idealistic, we considered the task possible if we did some

  • native to place

    We live in disconnected times. We occupy space but know little about it. Instead of joining communities or neighborhoods, we buy houses and make real estate investments. Local and international initiatives demonstrate how sustainable design can forge stronger communities.

  • numbers game

    Our generation has become very adept at quantifying things. We “crunch the numbers” with great efficiency. But I believe we have too often lost sight of the bigger picture in doing so, ending up with undesirable results. The design of our homes, and the construction of them as well, is falling...

  • part of the solution

    Why do I not see more architects involved in the public process? Is it that we do not consider ourselves “political”? How does the act of building not become political? We change cities and manipulate the natural environment. Our work affects the value of property and the daily experience of most...

  • prospecting

    My firm, Hutker Architects, has a multifaceted marketing program. One key ingredient is our Web site. It took a good deal of capital and person-hours to create, and the site continues to require attention to remain fresh.