Architectural Design, amongst all other types, has the ability to be “life-changing” and better yet, able to change the world. Many designers often focus on aesthetic features and generating some form of income.

Design falls into two categories: aesthetic design and problem-solving design, although problem-solving design can still be aesthetically pleasing. 

AESTHETIC DESIGN

This refers to how we think and feel about a product or design. The first impression plays a big role here when something is nice to look at therefore aesthetically pleasing. A common example of aesthetic design is certain high heels and their visually appealing style, opposing to the endless pain women go through wearing them. As someone once said, “beauty is pain!” 

Below are the three categories of aesthetics:

VISUAL AESTHETICS

This is visually appealing design consisting of elements such as colour, pattern, shape, balance and texture. Humans are very visual therefore designers often aim to create things that are beautiful and nice to look at.  

MATERIAL AESTHETICS

These are the materials used in the design with elements such as texture, weight, comfort and shape. This refers to the sleek design of the new watch you just bought or your new jacket that you shouldn’t have bought, but couldn’t resist. 

SOUND AESTHETICS

This refers to the sounds of the design. For example comparing two different speakers. Another example is the start of the engine of a car. You will hear the difference of sound. 

PROBLEM-SOLVING DESIGN

In order to solve problems with any form of design, you need to have a strong understanding of whats happening around you. Following social media, the news and conducting research can help gain some insight. Some of the main topics to target with design (for change) are:

HOMELESS

In the past, designers have creatively approached homelessness with design strategies to supply shelter and housing. How can you as a designer approach this? 

NATURAL DISASTERS   

Think of ways to act after a disaster. For example, there was an earthquake resistant school designed in Thailand. Prevent fires by designing communities surrounded by fire breaks. 

ENVIRONMENT

How can we conserve the planet with design? Think green design, recycling, sustainability. Solar powered designs have become a very effective approach. 

CRIME

Crime is a global issue. Architectural design can be utilized to create safer environments. Cities can be designed in ways that are better for surveillance. 

Think bigger remember that your idea could change someone else’s life. Collaborate with other designers and address social/environmental issues. Create projects. Design for change. 

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