Journal of Design Insight

Behind the scenes into the studio works of Maria Lorena Lehman.
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Top 3 Techniques for Learning from Your Own Architectural Designs

The coming together of your architectural elements will impact occupants, to either help them or hinder them. Of course, when you design, your intention is to help occupants through the environment you create. But how can you prevent your design from being used differently, or from becoming just another status quo building? The key is to understand how the behavior of your architectural designs impact your occupants.

The following are three simple, yet profound ways for you to gain deep...

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How the Future of Concept Design for Architecture Will Change

Concept Design: The Birth of New Methodologies

Many say that the most important phase of an architectural design is the concept formulation phase. Yet, many designers debate aspects related to architectural concept design – like what is the definition of a concept, what are the proper steps needed to achieve a concept, and what makes a concept design meaningful. While there are many ways in which to approach such topics, it becomes necessary to consider how concept design evolves.

As...

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How to Design Architecture for Occupant Memory

When Memory Precedes Experience

Have you ever considered how you would like your architectural environments to be remembered? Yes, there are certain famous buildings that are recognized in an instant, and at times the “images” of such buildings spread throughout the world in iconic fashion. In this sense, a building can become so famous that people have an impression of the building before they ever personally experience it for themselves. The memory precedes the experience.

But...

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Avoid Conflicting Design Solutions by Injecting Time

Detecting A Problematic Function

Have you ever designed for a solution that works in one environment and not in another? For instance, a certain architectural feature that uses color-shifting glass might work for the design of a restaurant, but not for the design of a library. Or a smart watch’s alarm reminding you to check your email or voice-message works well if sounding when you are waiting on a bus, but conflicts tremendously if alerting you while you are driving.

As you can see in...

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How to Create Healthcare Design Ideas from “Healing-Flow”

What is “Healing-Flow”?

The place to start innovating healthcare design ideas is by better understanding patient needs. This includes not only a deep understanding of what limits their healing process, but also a deep understanding of what propels their healing process. You see, there are ideal conditions which, when realized, can greatly help in making sure a patient gets the best possible care. And a strategic environmental design is critical to helping a patient’s ideal...

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How Your Environment Can Help You Design Better

Your environments are an extension of you. They can mirror your emotional state, can prompt you toward your next activities, can calm you down when you need tranquility and can help you to socialize when you want interaction with other people. But how can you use the environments around you to actually help you design better? Can environments trigger behavior change that helps you to reach your goals — thus, helping you to achieve what you may not have otherwise accomplished?

Everyday...

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When Glass in Architecture is Twice as Durable as Steel

What would you do within your design if you had access to glass in architecture that was stronger and more durable than steel? Would you span longer distances with it? Create more transparent and “warped” forms with it? Or might you even create new combinations of perceptual intrigue — like a transparent cantilever which extends outward further, or a transparent building base which makes all that is above it appear to “float”.

Such questions in...

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When Architectural Objects are “Food” For the Designer’s Creative Mind

Architectural environments can be a type of extension of oneself. Thus, by understanding the clues that we leave behind in our environments, we can actually gain a better understanding of ourselves. And such clues are everywhere within the spaces where we spend our time.

Such clues are architectural objects — which are everything from the type of furniture we have to the type of books we read and store in our bookshelves. Such architectural objects collectively say a...

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How Commercial Building Plans Help Refine Your Building Design Vision

Commercial building plans evolve over time as you travel through the different stages of creating your building, from schematic all the way through to your construction document set. As your original architectural design concept materializes in the beginning, you soon begin to anchor in those building design ideas that need to be finessed and built upon as your design process moves forward.

But I have some questions for you today…

Do you still continue to design with the same...

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Boost Creativity for an Innovative Design By Asking “What If” (Video)

So much of our time as architects is spent thinking and designing for projects that live on land, but what about architecture that lives on water? What if you had to design a human dwelling that is not only near the water, but actually in it?

Change a Major Variable…Like the Site

One would think that if you are an architect solely designing for buildings on land it would be a waste of time to think about what it would take to design them on water. But have you considered that by...

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