Interview with Architect Michael de Billot of CA Architects by Janine Course, Pelican Systems
What do you enjoy doing outside of Work?
Riding motorcycles, experiencing new adventures and enjoying time spent with family and friends.
What motivates you to get you up in the morning?
My girlfriend is an avid athlete (and highly competitive) so we are up at 04:30 every morning for extreme training to see how close we can come to passing out.
What do you consider the perfect holiday?
Travelling the West coast of Italy, exploring the coastal towns seemingly lost in time.
Were you born into architecture? What is your father’s and mother’s occupation?
I was not; my parents were in different fields of work.
Are you married and do you have children?
Not yet, but it is definitely on the horizon.
What differentiates CA Architects to other architecture firms in the industry?
We are a small yet highly motivated firm of architectural designers. We use cutting edge technology fused with the experience of our founding member to go above and beyond every project’s brief and client expectations.
What inspired you to become an architect?
It sounds simple, but the satisfaction of building buildings. To dream, create and develop spaces from concept to concrete reality is an amazing experience. We create the spaces that society inhabits on a daily basis; which is a pretty cool responsibility to have.
Which architect has most influenced your work or your work habits?
A Danish architect by the name of Bjarke Ingels. His ambitious works of ‘hedonistic sustainability’ proving how architecture can improve the quality of life for the human kind is infectious.
What advice would you give aspiring architects that you wish you had been told earlier?
I am only 28 therefore I still have a lot to learn, but my advice would be that you need to learn to wear many hats in your daily routine seamlessly.
What has been your biggest challenge in architecture or business and how have you overcome it?
Our biggest challenge is to show clients the value we add as architects to their projects and the misconception that good architects are expensive; if you think good architecture is expensive, try bad architecture.
What project up to date has been your favourite project to design and why?
We have a ‘’once in a lifetime’’ project that we have been working on as a collective for the past 18 months. I can’t say too much about it at this stage due to its high profile background but all I can say is watch this space in 2019…
Trends in architecture you have noticed or that have changed architecture for you:
The current trend is an ideology of an international architectural language that has buildings reduced to containers of space, boring and box-like. Architects’ choices tend to reaffirm the status quo by replicating what has already been done rather than inventing what could be. We as architects have the power of designing the future we would like to live in.
Design challenges that come up often
Time frames vs Budget vs Expectations
How are you incorporating sustainability into your architectural designs or Top 3 Green or Sustainability strategies for design?
Our architecture incorporates sustainable design principles suitable to each project’s geographic location, program, social responsibility and budget.
Tips for clients and important considerations at the start of a design
Build the best building your budget will allow, not the biggest.
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