Unlocking the Secrets to Success on Arcbazar

Hello Arcbazar readers!

Thank you for tuning in. By now we have a regular column, where we get to know the designers behind all the amazing submissions you come across on Arcbazar. Today, we’d like to introduce you to Lawrence Martin, one of Arcbazar’s Top 50 designers. He took part in 66 competitions, so you are most likely already familiar with his work. So, it’s about time our audience gets to really know Larry – what inspires him, the key to his success and his architectural vision. We hope you enjoy getting to know him as much as we did.

Larry Martin“Lawrence Martin” is actually dynamic duo of partners in business and life – Larry Martin and Misako Yamaguchi, his wife. Larry  wanted to be an architect since he was 7 years old. After graduating with a BArch from the University of Oregon, he worked for an architectural firm for 13 years, before he and Misako started their own firm in 2011 – YAMAGUCHI MARTIN ARCHITECTS. “While our work before 2011 was mostly in public sector projects, like schools and recreation centers, we have since focused more on commercial office and residential remodels. Although our work has us engaged in the built environment in the city, we truly enjoy getting out of town to take long walks in the mountains and many parklands surrounding Denver. It refreshes us and allows us to stay focused on our work.”Lawrence Martin design

Larry and Misako draw their inspiration from a number of architects – both past and present, modern and traditional, including CFA Voysey, H.H. Richardson, Steven Holl and Tadao Ando.

So what is the key to their success on Arcbazar?

With so many talented designers to compete against, being selected as a winner on Arcbazar can be very difficult. We try to understand the clients program and find a vision for the project that will be both practical and architecturally pleasing. Sometimes the client likes what we create and other times not so much. But, we try to always be true to what we think is realistic within the framework of a contextually appropriate architectural aesthetic.

Lawrence Martin designs 2All of the Top 50 designers and architects we spoke to have one thing in common – their continuous strive to learn from each competition and other contestants. “There are many talented Arcbazar designers each with their unique style, experiences, and cultural influences. Their different perspectives allow them to approach designs very differently than we do and that enlivens and enriches the design solutions. Each time we submit in a competition, we get to review the other designs and learn from the solutions they developed.”

With Larry’s and Misako’s vast experience in residential design, we decided to use the opportunity to pick their brains on the trends in this area for 2016-2017:

  1. Tiny Houses less than 300 square feet
  2. Smaller homes for more practical living.
  3. Energy efficient housing with more insulation and taking advantage of the sun.
  4. Minimalist housing with simple lines and less cluttered spaces.
  5. Modern mix styles, like modern-rustic, modern-eclectic, etc…
  6. Open floor plans in the living areas are still very important along with…
  7. …the trend toward using a single space for multiple functions.

That’s all for today! Stay tuned for more interviews, quizzes, trends and news in the world of architecture and design!

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