How do I start going towards architecture?


I am a 15 year old student in North London. I’m doing my GCSE’s this year in English, Maths, Graphics, Science, Spanish, Geogrpahy, Art and Photography. 

I aspire to be a architect since I’m like 12 years old and I’ve been trying to pick related subjects in school so it can get me closer to my goal. For my A-Levels I’ve picked Graphics, Mathematics, and Art. However I want to know what I can do at home or anywhere to get me closer to becoming a architect. Is there anything I should start practicing or learning to help me progress fast in the future. 

Thank you, I really appreciate any answer

Feb 7, 19 4:28 pm

it sounds like you've chosen your a-levels extremely well, and it's great that you're trying to prepare for architecture school so early. getting into the habit of sketching often (buildings, people, mechanical objects, nature) will be super helpful, especially if you pay as much attention as possible to the play of light in your sketches.

on the other end of things, it wouldn't hurt to start learning some programming too. computation is becoming more and more important in architectural practice, and you have time to establish a real foundation of knowledge that you'll definitely be able to apply later.

Feb 7, 19 6:17 pm

Tanks so much for replying. It helps me so so much, I will start to try sketching and I’ll look into programming too thank you very much


Definitely practice sketching.  Creating formally composed drawings is a great skill, but it is also important to know how to take a sketchbook, some pens/pencils, and draw what you see.  It's often the hardest skill for people to pick up so the more you practice, the better.

If you find an opportunity to shadow an architect in your area, that would also be awesome.  It would give you a chance to see what the typical day-to-day is like, ask questions about the profession, and potentially get a contact for future advice.  If you could intern, that would be better, but even if you can't yet, that's ok too. Never intern for free!  

Feb 7, 19 7:55 pm

Thank you so much for replying as it really helps me. I will definitely practice sketching and watch some YouTube videos on it.


Read "Architect?" by Roger Lewis.

Feb 7, 19 9:11 pm

Definitely will, thanks


Look at all the buildings you like and ask yourself why?  Ask others the same question, and take them seriously.  When you get to school, remember who you're working for and draw with your hands, not with a computer.  Good luck.

Feb 7, 19 9:24 pm

Thank you very much for the advice. I will start doing that and again thanks for replying


Check out our EMBAC program at UC Berkeley~

Feb 8, 19 1:30 pm

Make sure you read and understand most of the posts of the industry on the forum.  Gain as much insights into the daily grind, lost hopes, angst and marginal accomplishments by many in the industry.  Make sure you understand your role in this industry and decide if it should your profession or hobby.  If money and status are what you're looking for you've got to be incredibly talented as a designer, or become a builder or developer. Just trying to give you some reality and long term insight.

Feb 8, 19 2:57 pm

​thank you for the reply. I will definitely try to read a lot of the posts from this forum and I will do some more research into architecture to see if I like it as a job or hobby like you said. Again thanks for the great advice, I appreciate it.

atelier nobody

While it is true that architecture is under-compensated when compared to other professions with similar education requirements, don't let that discourage you if you really have a passion for it. Do be aware that most of us spend a lot more of our careers doing working drawings of our bosses' designs than seeing our own designs realized - it helps if you love the design challenge of working out the fussy details just as much as (or more than) overall conceptual design.

I'm sure you have some good teachers that recognise the fact you are on your path and will help you. Good luck and respect. (ignore the trolls because they've never built a bridge)

Feb 8, 19 8:52 pm

architects don't build bridges/buildings. we design them. you're thinking of a contractor.


Thanks so much bro


And try paying close attention to your surroundings, look up once in a while when walking in the city, go around corners, take detours and don't use the same routes all the time, get to know your environment without using apps to get from a to b. Touch buildings, run your hand along the walls, knock on stuff, feel their textures. When you enter a building try visualising your route through the building, wander around and explore, pay attention and don't take anything for granted, there were people involved designing almost everything you see and use, try understanding why things are done the way they are and if you would do things different what would you change. Also, besides the sketching and the programming, make things with your hands, maybe wood working or furniture or learning how to cook and learn how to put different materials or ingredients together into something that gives you pleasure, the pleasure of how it looks, feels, can be used or tastes. Something like that. And read and travel, experience other perspectives than your own.

Feb 9, 19 7:26 am

Thank you so so much for the advice and that you took time to reply and help me out I really appreciate it. I will definitely do the things you suggeseted thank you


Keep in mind that the life of a traditional architect is not a lavish one. It's low paying, long hours, and largely unfulfilling. Don't romanticize it. Do your research. Job shadow architects. Make a practical and logical decision.

Feb 9, 19 7:57 am

^ +++++++++++

Makes a good hobby after you come to your senses and go to dental school.


Yeah I’ll do some more research also im going to a construction company for about a week to see how a architects work looks like and I will have a chance to ask questions so I will definitely find out as much as I can.


A construction company is going to show you a contractors job. An architecture firm will show you what architects do.


A developer job will show you what money looks like.


Lol what developer? Can I get more info?


When you see a building out in the real world, slowly and carefully approach it from a distance, take small steps at first, then pick up speed as you walk along and you'll be going towards architecture.

Feb 10, 19 1:09 pm



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Mar 24, 19 6:01 pm
atelier nobody

It sounds like you're on the right track. The only thing I would add is to learn technical drawing, by hand, with a straightedge and triangles. We do most of our work on computers, but the people who know how to draw a set of working drawings by hand are almost universally better at CAD/BIM than those that don't.

Mar 25, 19 5:39 pm

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