Amanda Swain

Amanda Swain

Berkeley, CA, US



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My name is Amanda Gabriela, and I am a Bay Area native designer, and a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design in the department of Interior Architecture.  My interests, hobbies, and personal work have always been multidisciplinary ever since I was younger, growing up in Berkeley in a family of designers and musicians, being "artistic" was not taught to me.  My architectural sense, style, and confidence was grown and nurtured by my mother while I grew up in the house that she designed and built herself.  I knew traditional architecture wouldn't cut it for me, that is why I chose Interior Architecture.  It is a unique type of design that bridges Interior design and architecture together, focusing on adaptive reuse.  In school my projects ranged from hostels, to hotels, to bakeries, to chapels.  After I graduated I returned to Berkeley where I worked on a large scale live / work development for artists in La, as well as started a design studio in Oakland with my partner where I work on personal projects such as wood working, concrete mold making, and lamp making.  My interests, hobbies, and work all revolve around human centered Interior Architecture, lighting, object making / 3d printing, interaction / experience, artistic expression, and emphasis on process in everything I do.  I take inspiration from any discipline that inspires me to create such as Islamic art and pattern-making, to McQueen runway shows, to 3dprinted objects to Mexican chairs from the 50's.  I love to investigate and to create things that are bold and interesting. 

I am always interested in people reaching out to me, for projects, jobs or collaborations. 

Feel free to look at my  RECENT WORK HERE


Kava Massih Architects, Berkeley, CA, US, Designer

I worked as an interior oriented architectural designer on a 400,000 sq ft live/ work development for artists in the Arts District in LA. My work ranged from physical model making , to 3d model making using sketch up, auto cad, rhino, and revit. Ordering materials, and creating material boards for meetings with the client, as well as renderings, and visuals of exterior and interior options. Other work included working on and creating construction documents. I worked on drafting exterior wall, floor, and window details, overall building sections, site sections, and floor plans updates.

My favorite part of working was the time I spent on the interior of the building, developing a lighting lay out for the hallways and entrances to the units that included a interesting plywood entrance and numbering / color system that allowed for people to locate themselves more easily in the building.

Jul 2014 - May 2015


Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), Providence, RI, US, Bachelors, Interior Arch

Fine art background, architecturally trained.

Jan 2010 - May 2014


RISD travel grant, Grant

Awarded grant to study Mayan Ruins in Mexico 2 years in a row


Barbara Lee US Congress Award; Art For America. Berkeley, 2009, 1st Place

I won second place in an art competition sponsored by the US Congress, winner got awarded a trip to Washington and their piece hung in the Capitol.


Berkeley High Photo Contest, Berkeley 2009, 1st Place

Photography award given to me out of 3300 students included a gift certificate to local photography store, and materials.


Ed Wood Memorial Art Scholarship, Albany 2008, 1st Place

Awarded $1,500 to further my art education, Award was given to the most promising art student. I used scholarship money to attend the California College Of The Arts Summer Atelier, in Oakland CA.


Areas of Specialization