The Architect in All of Us

By Debra A. Levy

When I was a little girl, I wanted to be an architect. It appealed to me as a career like no other. After all, being an architect would allow me to combine in one profession a creative bent with an analytical bent—both of these compete within me on a daily basis to this very day. To top that off, I’d get to see my work come to life and grow 5-, 20-, 50-stories in the air. And I’d get to wear a hardhat to visit my work as it sprouted from a construction site and metamorphosed into a home or an office. It all seemed very exciting and vital.

While visiting my Mom’s house—the one where I grew up—in New York a few weeks ago, I found some of the original projects I’d designed. Carefully drawn on graph paper by a 9-year-old’s shaky hand, they show a penchant for designing homes with large kids’ bedrooms. One design was of a completely round residence with a pool in the center.

Alas, the career desired at age 9 had faded into a memory by my teens during which I chose a different profession every week. And they were all extinguished when I went to work for the college newspaper and found an incredible sense of satisfaction and worth in bringing people tools (news and information) to help them live, all in a well-designed package.

When you think about it, architects and editors are both doing similar jobs. Both magazines and buildings are created from nothing other than an idea. They grow, take shape, form, and eventually spring forth alive from nothing. They are both dedicated to solving problems and making people’s lives better. The editor’s well-designed package is made of paper; the architect’s is made of bricks, mortar and yes, lots and lots of glass.

This issue celebrates three of my favorite themes—glass, architects and New York. We hope you enjoy it and gain knowledge from it. If you are at the AIA show, please stop by and visit us in booth #4158 . You’ll meet our staff and one former wannabe architect who’s glad she ended up in all glass, all the time, instead.

To view the laid-in version of this article in our digital edition, CLICK HERE.