Archinect - Visiting Critic 2017-08-19T22:25:35-04:00 Check Engine jpastva 2016-07-08T07:05:35-04:00 >2016-07-14T01:19:35-04:00 <p>As originally seen in <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">YAF CONNECTION</a></p><p>Americans, culturally, are generally optimistic. &nbsp;Sure there are the short sellers, but most of us are <em>long</em> the American way. &nbsp;Because of this, there is an expectation that growth in all forms - job, economic, status, wages - will just always happen and the US will remain atop the global marketplace. &nbsp;However, hidden in the expectation of unending growth are two lurking phenomena: bubbles and cycles. &nbsp;From an economic perspective, they both can be managed with the right business savvy. &nbsp;It is possible for a business to survive the troughs of a down cycle or a bubble burst by being diversified, nimble or innovative. &nbsp;But if that plan includes trimming staff, inflexible hours or furloughs, it can cause talent to leave the profession. &nbsp;If we want to recruit talent into the profession <em>and</em> retain them, there must be a plan in place for individual growth and development in addition to business or billings growth.</p><p>Two of the possible issues that cap the p...</p> Leadership Development: An Investment Vehicle jpastva 2015-02-28T15:45:30-05:00 >2015-03-04T23:07:34-05:00 <p>As originally seen in <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">YAF Connection</a></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>American architecture firms are suffering from a disinvestment in leadership development.&nbsp; It&rsquo;s not because they don&rsquo;t want to, nor is it entirely their fault.&nbsp; I chalk it up to not having the financial capital to part with.&nbsp; This is because many firms operate as a small business, defined by the US Small Business Administration (SBA) as gross revenue of $7.5 million or less per the appropriate category1.&nbsp; But don&rsquo;t just take the government&rsquo;s word for it.&nbsp; Take a look around your office.&nbsp; If you work in a characteristic architectural office, chances are you&rsquo;ll have less than eight colleagues2.&nbsp; By anyone&rsquo;s definition, that feels pretty small.&nbsp; However it shouldn&rsquo;t hinder a firm from seeking out alternative opportunities to develop leaders, because human capital has traditionally been one of the best investments a company can make.</p><p>Operating as a small business does come with perks, many of which are a good base for leadership.&nbsp; Samples of situation...</p> The InSB jpastva 2013-03-26T15:39:33-04:00 >2013-03-26T15:39:33-04:00 <p> As seen in <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">YAF Connection (p.29)</a></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Architectural education has recently become a hotly contested<br> topic. A bevy of contrarian hypotheses have hit the streets;<br> from an article by Aaron Betsky, who stumps for the idea that<br> professional degrees should only be reserved for Master&rsquo;s study,<br> to the University of Minnesota&rsquo;s degree-to-licensure program that<br> will only take 7-years, and, finally, the elimination of a number of<br> B.Arch programs from around the nation (and all of Canada).<br> It&rsquo;s an intriguing dilemma and each stakeholder has its own reasons<br> or vested interest. Even the accreditation committees that oversee<br> the process are in constant flux as they tweak what they think will<br> be the best way to get pupils from academia to practice. But with<br> so many differing opinions on what best prepares a student to start<br> stamping blueprints, it&rsquo;s very unclear which has actually been the<br> most effective. However, one point is clear. There is a significant<br> gap (and frankly a stark ...</p> YAF Philly runs successful Design Charrette jpastva 2013-02-09T17:40:00-05:00 >2013-02-09T20:16:34-05:00 <p> Reported on by <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Flying Kite Media</a> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Technically Philly</a></p> <p> On Saturday, January 12th from 10am-2pm the YAF Philly partnered with local architecture firm Haley Donovan and business Benjamin's Desk to host a design charrette. &nbsp;But this wasn't your typical pie in the sky design competition. &nbsp;Benjamin's Desk had a real world abstract to offer up and was willing to let designers into their space to help them solve it. &nbsp;The prompt: Expand their co-working space to the 8th floor of their current address - 1701 Walnut St. &nbsp;Since they are a start-up, non-niche space, there were a number of wants &amp; needs, but a very limited budget. &nbsp;In other words: pragmatic constraints. &nbsp;</p> <p> In total, 12 architects and designers answered the call and were treated to a day very different from their typical office routine. &nbsp;After an obligatory breakfast session to wake everyone up, Mike Maher (co-founder of BD) ran through the previously stated wants, needs and concerns for future growth. &nbsp;He then led a tour o...</p> The Designated Sketcher jpastva 2013-01-22T11:01:00-05:00 >2013-01-29T11:44:32-05:00 <p> Jeffrey Pastva, AIA LEED AP</p> <p> Pastva is an Assistant Editor for the YAF Connection, serves as Chair&nbsp;of the Young Architects Forum&nbsp;of Philadelphia, founder of The Designated Sketcher website and<br> a Project Architect at Haley Donovan in Haddonfield, NJ.</p> <p> Constructive criticism is valuable currency in the world of the designer. Without it, designers have no litmus against which to test their paper theories and would be unprepared for the gauntlet before them. But with it, we gain perspective from our peers, our professors, and our colleagues before it is presented in front of any authority. Not all feedback is created equal though; the credentials of the source, the level/quality of detail, and the diversity of perspective all affect its value. Realizing a need for high caliber critique, I set out to create an online platform that allows students and professionals from different backgrounds and status to interact regarding their works-in-progress.</p> <p> The site is called The Designated...</p> Elevator Pitch: In Review jpastva 2012-12-02T15:05:15-05:00 >2013-01-16T15:23:31-05:00 <p> As originally seen on <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The Designated Sketcher</a>, published in <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Construction Today</a> and <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">YAF Connection</a>.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> As Chairs of YAF Philadelphia, we are charged with staying up to date with the current issues and challenges facing the emerging professionals under our umbrella.&nbsp; We are particularly concerned with helping young professionals overcome skill or experience gaps that may cause them to be overlooked or undervalued by potential employers. In our search for this form of &ldquo;mispricing&rdquo; within the community, we found that many recent graduates have limited experience articulating their ideas to audiences outside the academic sphere.</p> <p> Our response was to create an event that provided the opportunity for up and coming designers to pitch a project to a panel of seasoned professionals in return for constructive criticism. We believe this simulated environment helps participants achieve the necessary oral skills to succeed at the next level.&nbsp; It also prepares them with intellectual agility,...</p> Drexel University - Designated Sketcher Sketching Workshop jpastva 2012-11-18T21:17:20-05:00 >2012-12-02T14:51:25-05:00 <p> Original post as seen on <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The Designated Sketcher</a>.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> On November 10th, Designated Sketcher founder Jeffrey Pastva was invited to participate in a workshop at Drexel University&rsquo;s Westphal College of Media Arts &amp; Design.&nbsp; It was offered school-wide and drew interest from a diverse group of disciplines that included architecture, interior design, graphic &amp; product design.&nbsp; The final goal of the workshop was to add sketching as a communication tool to their skill set, but in order to get there, we had to start with some basic lessons.&nbsp; Step one included a group of &lsquo;sketchercizes&rdquo; for warm up as well as a baseline assessment of their skills.&nbsp; Once that base was established, we were able to divide the group into those who wanted to work on skills such as shading and others who wanted to learn paraline sketching.&nbsp; From there we moved on to the more advanced exercises: Perspectives + Diagramming.&nbsp; After a quick instructional course the students were sent throughout the brand new URBN c...</p> Response to "10 Things" jpastva 2012-10-23T09:30:40-04:00 >2012-10-29T22:49:35-04:00 <p> As originally seen on <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The Designated Sketcher</a></p> <p> I recently came across a viral article, written by Linda Bennett of, and it inspired me to follow up with my own piece about all those pesky things that they don&rsquo;t teach you in architecture school. Her voice and audience appears to be advice for current students and how to succeed specifically in an academic setting, but I would like to add my own dash about how to apply it to your career going forward. I will refer to the same titles as the original article, so please see HERE for what I am responding to.</p> <p> <strong>1. Forget About Winning + Losing&#8232;</strong></p> <p> I translate this to mean that your final grade or criticism received doesn&rsquo;t always accurately reflect your personal achievement on a particular project. Architecture is indeed very subjective and you will never be able to please everyone with a &ldquo;right&rdquo; answer. Critiques are used as a learning tool for students to hone their ability to form an argument. So, even if you don&rsquo;t win...</p> ENYA Follow Up jpastva 2012-10-18T13:07:21-04:00 >2012-10-29T22:58:38-04:00 <p> <em>As originally seen on <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">The Designated Sketcher</a></em></p> <p> This past weekend, I traveled to the ENYA Future Now Summit to gather with fellow architecture professionals and hopefuls. The goal of the event focused on the future of the profession and how emerging professionals in the field can shape upcoming challenges, future iterations and harness the potential of a coming paradigm shift. That shift is personified in the additional layers of social media, digital representation, marketing, etc. that will be required to be successful in the current turbulent environment.</p> <p> Based on its location, New York City, it was not a surprise that a number of design heavyweights were present to discuss ideas, offer opinions and inform on how to best take advantage of the tools before us. This delivery came in a couple different forms: The Keynote speech, the panel discussion, the intimate mentoring meeting, and finally in a group charrette. Each has its own benefit and flaws, but what I thought was going...</p>