The Core Areas of Interior Designer Responsibility
First of all, in the scope of this paper it is essential to refer to the background of interior designer profession. This profession integrates aesthetics and safety of interior spaces, while taking in consideration the way different lighting, space, textures, colors, and furniture work together for meeting the needs of visitors or occupants. Such professional works both with the private and public settings including shopping malls, residences, offices, schools and hospitals. In other words, designing of living and commercial environments is planned by interior designers. The designers manage the process of turning their ideas into the reality and are tending to design the place which is both attractive and practical. The projects may range from structural alterations to the choice of wallpaper furnishings, lighting and curtains.
Interior Design is a multi-featured career where creativity is used to get technical solutions that are applied within a certain structure to achieve an interior atmosphere and provide a home like lifestyle. However, it is wise to note that, interior design and architecture rely on the designing activity of a space that is within or without a building. As cities continue to be congested, residents want more space to live and at the same time, they need interior design to turn houses into homes. The most notable thing here is that the terms, complexity of space, comfort, and human experiences are what produce clear-cut lines between the two forces.
The roles and service expectations of both disciplines are very dynamic considering that the economy, politics, and social status of a country are ever dynamic. Conventionally, both disciplines are tending to be clearly distinctive, have boundaries that tie them to the legislation. This ideology of distinctiveness is further enhanced by the respective licensure and professional organizations. The other important issue concerning these disciplines is that the exams are very rigorous and help the future professionals in determine how to transform the space within and without the building. This essay focuses on interior design, its role in architecture, and why any student should enroll for the course.
Architecture is designing buildings, using materials in a manner that will create balance and be aesthetic to the outside eye while interior design directs itself to the inside of the building. The main goal of design is to make our lives better and more comfortable than it is. A common language is usually shared between the two disciplines. This language is used to transfer some form of significant communication to the public and is comprehended by all the practitioners involved. This implies that both disciplines when coupled with industrial design, graphic and landscape design work towards solving difficulties for persons and their combined societies with the aim of accommodating, enhancing, and making preparations for a better tomorrow.
Many professions in interior design organizations try to define how interior design is an independent discipline and make their argument legitimate. Architecture deals with the synthesis of economical and practical needs, putting the needs into critical thinking and coming up with a solution and in this case a building.
In the past three centuries, architecture has been a discipline that has been used to help man to achieve a meaningful focus and a higher spiritual sense. An architectural structure can be defined as an artistic utterance of principles of culture, and intentional design options founded on modern technology and its meaning. The language of reduction is used in accomplishing the process of design. A design is got through contraction of ideas, detail, space, material, and symbols. Interior design is usually engraved within the building.
Interior design is placed within the interests of architectural practice. Interior design involves designing the interior components in accordance with the outside components within the site conditions that are associated with the building. In interior design, both the client and the designer agree on the intended outcome. The fine details are taken into consideration and the interior designer takes a careful control of all the elements to get the best design possible (Nash, 1998).
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Interior design uses services and additive assemblies that have been contracted separately from those being used in architecture (Barnard, 1994). Although both disciplines share the same processes, vocabulary, interior design is free of the intensity of architecture. The kind of additive assemblies used within the inside may be very distinct from the main architecture. For example, the finishes, motifs, materials, paint, space, elements of architecture used can be independent to of the architectural language of the main building. The interior designer and the architecture often adhere to the legal and ethical aspects of building thus have the autonomy of ensuring that the clients are safe within the structure. However, it is important to note that, a tenant at the building opts to concentrate on his single unit and does not focus on the entire building. He or she is either intentionally or contractually removed from the building. Although this may not be the case in some places like the Rotunda of the University of Virginia.
Some designers coerce the user of the building to identify with both the exterior architecture and the interior design. Thomas Jefferson designed this Rotunda in 1822, after going for a tour in Rome (2011). He wanted to make an ideal academic village where knowledge could be shared. The shapes of both the upper and lower entrances are shaped like a flowing hourglass. The Rotunda’s dome room is a result of a blend of architecture and philosophy. Jefferson designed it to be the centre of knowledge. The rotunda’s ceiling is a white dome with a skylight. The skylight sis made up of aluminum and Plexiglas. Light rays are seen from below as they radiate like spokes. The Lawn can be viewed from the dome thus making the user of the facility to identify both with the building and with the interior design at the same time (Jefferson, 2011). A visitor at the dome can see the Lawn, mountains, the sky, a symbol of the infiniteness of freedom of the human mind. The Rotunda’s dome accepts the existence of the outside architecture and interior design. This is where both discipline congruent effectively to satisfy the needs of man.
It is wise to note that, both architecture and interior design rely on the relationship between common concepts. Interior design is an additive process whereas s architectures uses reductive language. From a complete work, both professionals need to be appreciated because they have used their creativity to produce good work. An interior design can chose to supplement or ignore an architect’s work while an architect may not be able to do the same. In conclusion, although the language differs, both disciplines work for the good of making man’s life better.
Working Schedule of Interior Designer
Interior designers can work in a variety of environments. These include: hotels, homes, offices, hospitals, villas, palaces, stores among others. A majority of the interior designers like working as residential designers. Some interior designers work to train the next generation of interior designers (Careers in Interior Design, 2006). Interior design involves a less stressful task of transforming inner space according to the needs of the customer. A career in interior design can also enable an individual to work as a salesperson for related industries for instance furnishing industries. Most people have landed in doing interior design without any formal education. This discipline relies on creativity, knowledge of the available materials and the latest design. Anyone who wants to take the discipline of interior design has to be very creative. They must have a mind that is very artistic and excellent in drawing. A professional should assess people who make sketches, blend colors well before they commit themselves to the field. Technical drawing is also an essential requirement.
The core areas of interior designer responsibility involve the following aspects:
- surveying and inspecting buildings;
- developing the brief, which details what part of the space will be used;
- drawing up and researching rough plans;
- setting schedules and negotiating fees for the project;
- choosing materials and developing detailed designs;
- supervising the process of the work execution.
Professional Qualities of Interior Designer
In majority of cases, the interior designers work Monday to Friday, 39 hours/week. At the same time, there is a probability that some weekend or evening may be needed for the urgent order accomplishing. Usually, designers work in the design studios, but at the same time, significant share of such professionals operates at home. Some phases of designers’ work may require spending significant quantity of time on location.
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The interior designer should have the following professional qualities:
- Good IT and drawing skills;
- Imagination and creativity;
- Eye for design, including good 3D awareness and color;
- Ability for the concepts’ visualization and issuing the proper explanation to others;
- Interest in design and changing trends (Piotrowski, 1992).
Core Tasks of an Interior Designer
The next issue to be outlined in this paper is the core tasks of an interior designer in the scope of the typical project executing.
They may be represented in the following manner:
- Search for and bidding on new projects;
- Meeting with a client for finding out what the client needs and desires, the space allocation and evaluation of the client’s budget for a particular project;
- Determining the goals of the client and project requirements;
- Considering the allocation of space and options for people to move in it;
- Sketching the preliminary design plans- such as electrical layouts;
- Specifying the furnishings and materials such as furniture, plumbing fixtures, lighting, wall finishes and flooring;
- Coming up with a properly developed design plan and budget estimate. In majority of cases, the computer-aided-design (CAD) is used for this purpose;
- Presenting the budget and design plan to the client and afterwards, its revising in accordance with the client’s input;
- Total finalizing of the design plan, finishes, specifying materials flooring and lighting;
- Preparing final plans, using computer applications
- In the case if there is a requirement, caused by the scope of the project or issued by the municipality, the interior designer should submit drawings to a building inspector for ensuring that the designed interior meets the codes of a particular building;
- If necessary, hiring architects for managing the structural work, and other contractors for executing the technical work;
- Placing orders for materials and overseeing the process of design elements installation;
- Setting timeframes for the project;
- Supervising the project for ensuring that it is done properly and meets the deadline;
- Collaborating with the client upon the project is completed to make sure the client is completely satisfied; otherwise, one should make the necessary corrections (Mesher, 2010).
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Core Requirements to the Professional Activity of the Interior Designer
While discussing the core requirements to the professional activity of the interior designer, additional attention should be paid to the fact that in many of the US states, the interior designers are required to be certified, registered or licensed. The written exam is administered by the National Council for Interior Design Qualification, which is an obligatory one in these states, for taking an exam. The individual is required to have six years of combined education – experience and postsecondary education (at least two years), more than that, the interior designer is required to maintain one’s certification, license or registration (Employment and Training Administration, 2011).
Advancement Opportunities for the Interior Designer
The next issue to be considered is the advancement opportunities, which are available for the interior designer, for instance, the on-the-job training (1-3 years) provides the interior designer with an option of advancement to the supervisory positions – such as design department head or chief designer. In the large scale organisations, these positions are usually available. There is also an option for the experienced interior designers to specialize in one particular aspect of design or to establish one’s own firm, which provides the interior design services.
In accordance with the estimates of the US Bureau of Labor and while referring to the statistical data, offered by this organization, the interior design industry is rapidly growing and that is why the significant rate of competition is expected in this industry by 2018. That is why among the significant quantity of professionals, who are working in this area, those individuals, who are persistent, creative and have the significant formal training and will fare best (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2011).
While referring to the statistical data, offered by the US Bureau of Labor, median annual salary of $46,180 was earned by interior designers in the United States
Education of the Interior Designers
Training for becoming the interior designer takes 2-4 years and is available from professional colleges, design schools and universities. More than that, there is an option of earning an associate certificate or degree by attending a 2-3 year program, or a bachelor’s degree in the case of mastering 4 year program.
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In the case of getting the bachelor’s degree the individual is most likely to start a 1-3 year apprenticeship program at architecture or design firm band being supervised by an experienced interior designer. In the case if a graduate has an associate degree or certificate, one may start the career path from being an assistant of an interior designer.
Alongside with the on-the-job training the short courses in the specific areas may be offered by the employers; for instance, IT packages and/or presentation skills development. It is obvious that in the era of rapid technological development and wide computerization in all areas of human activities, the interior designers should be up-to-date with innovative trends and products. After building a reputation and an image of a professional in the area of interior design, the designers prefer choosing self employment or freelance working.
There are the cases when the architectural practice or design consultancy may offer the candidate without a diploma or degree a trainee post, in such cases, the employers expect their applicants to demonstrate the high level of the relevant experience and flair.
It is essential for the interior designer to have the portfolio of the varied designs in order to provide the potential employers and customers with an option of assessing the skills and abilities of the designer. It is possible to make a claim that in the area of interior design, the work placement – whether it is paid or unpaid is invaluable because in the ion share of cases, the employees expect their entrants to be familiar with the major part of available computer design software.
It is essential to refer to the fact that for those people who have got the relevant experience, the mature entry is possible. In order to enter to a degree or diploma, the adults are recommended to manage the access course in interior design.
The interior designers collaborate with the structural engineers, architects, builders and mechanical engineers for determining the way the interior spaces would look, function and would be furnished. More than that, these professionals read the blueprints and that is why they should be aware of the core principles of the building, its codes and regulations of inspection.
Even while taking into account the fact that some of the drawings or sketches may be freehand, the lion share of the interior designers applies the computer-aided design (CAD) into the practice for developing and depicting their drawings (McKellar and Sparke, 2014).
Many interior designers specify their professional activity on the particular type of building – such as hospital, home, or hotel; on a specific room – kitchen, bathroom or living room; on a specific style, etc. Other designers are working for the home furnishings stores, and for providing their clients with the design services, directed at assisting the clients in choosing furnishings and materials. Some interior designers develop the plans, designs and drawings for construction and installation of electrical layouts, floor plans and plans, which are essential for the building permits.The preliminary design may be drafted by the interior designers into documents, which may be furthermore applied as the inclusive (construction documents, involving attachments and schedules) or simple (as sketches)
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Typology of Interior Designers
It is possible to outline the following typology of interior designers, based on their professional specialization,
These professionals apply the strategies for the water and energy efficiencies improvement and for reaching the highest quality of the indoor air. The environmentally preferable products are specified by these designers- such as cork and bamboo for floors. Such designers may get the certification in the area of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). Such certificate is issued by the U.S. Green Building Council and it indicates the fact that building and its interior space has been developed and designed with the sustainable concepts practical application.
The core area of responsibility of such designers implies the spaces’ renovation and making, more accessible, in majority of cases, such designers renovate spaces for people with special needs or for elderly people, but at the same time, such people may benefit in other areas of their professional activity. For instance, the entry without steps may be useful for the individuals with disabilities, who are moving in a wheelchair, but at the same time, it may be helpful for young mother, who is pushing the baby stroller.
Kitchen and Bath Designers
The area of specialization for these professionals involves the bathrooms and kitchens these designers have the expert knowledge in the area of the fixtures, cabinets, plumbing, appliances and electrical solutions for these rooms.
These professionals focus on the effect of lighting for office, home and public spaces.
As it have been previously stated, the interior designers are responsible for making interior spaces beautiful, safe, and functional by determining requirements of the space and selecting items for decoration- such as lighting, colors, and materials. Their profession is considered to be promising and demanded in the nearest future and that is why the high rate of competition is expected in the labor market. That is why in order to become a demanded professional; such designer should develop one’s professional qualities and stay up-to-date in terms of design, technologies and software.