Archinect
Sean Joyner

Sean Joyner

Los Angeles, CA, US

 

About 

Sean is an architect-trained writer and editor at Archinect. His articles and essays utilize themes in history, philosophy, and psychology to explore lessons for students and professionals within the fields of architecture and design. Sean's work prior to Archinect focused primarily on k-12 and higher education projects in Southern California. Some of the things Sean enjoys are playing and practicing chess, studying obscure topics like quantum physics and cryptography, working out, and reading compelling books.

Elsewhere:

Sean's General Blog on Archinect:

The Socratic Method : Questioning Our Assumptions About Design

This blog explores ideas about design and how it relates to our lives through research and critical thinking. As the title suggests this will be a platform to present thought provoking ideas intended for further discussion.

Category Title

Sean's Featured Articles on Archinect

How CO Architects Transitioned a 110+ Team to Work From Home, Wed, Apr 1 '20

We’ve been able to dive into various perspectives on remote work in architecture. More recently, we heard from Leah Alissa Bayer and Jennifer Kretchmer on running a fully virtual architectural practice. Further back, we connected with Diana Nicklaus of Saam Architecture to learn from her ...

How CO Architects Transitioned a 110+ Team to Work From Home
 

USC Architecture Faculty Share Insights on Virtual Learning , Fri, Mar 27 '20

As institutions of higher learning round out the shift to online instruction, architecture schools also have had to address the pivot. However, the tactile nature of architectural education lends itself to the curious case of duplicating the tactile benefits of studio digitally. There's no doubt ...

USC Architecture Faculty Share Insights on Virtual Learning
 

Managing a Virtual Design Studio with Leah Alissa Bayer, Tue, Mar 24 '20

As we continue our investigation of virtual practice in architecture, the diverse range of insights and approaches represented attest to the creative spirit of the architectural profession. We recently spoke with Jennifer Kretschmer, AIA, founder of J Kretschmer Architect, a fully virtual ...

Managing a Virtual Design Studio with Leah Alissa Bayer
 

Running a Virtual Architecture Practice With Jennifer Kretschmer, Tue, Mar 17 '20

With drastic measures underway to mitigate the novel COVID-19 pandemic, many architects are transitioning to remote work. Firms, both large and small, are making the shift towards a virtual practice, and for many, the move brings new terrain. Remote work has been a topic of discussion for quite ...

Running a Virtual Architecture Practice With Jennifer Kretschmer
 

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Project Architect, Fri, Mar 13 '20

In our study of the various job titles within the industry of architecture, we’ve so far explored a wide variety, each with its own unique qualities. Today we move to the Project Architect (PA), a position that quite literally captures the essence of the architect. Project Architects are ...

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Project Architect
 

Exploring Modular Construction in Addressing Homelessness with CannonDesign, Thu, Mar 12 '20

Archinect recently explored the architect's role in addressing homelessness in Los Angeles. We connected with Michael Pinto AIA and Helena Jubany FAIA, both principals at NAC Architecture, to discuss their work in tackling this social crisis. This previous discussion centered around the cruciality ...

Exploring Modular Construction in Addressing Homelessness with CannonDesign
 

A Conversation with Julia Gamolina, Founder of Madame Architect, Sun, Mar 8 '20

When Archinect first met Julia Gamolina, we looked at her unique journey and how she navigated the complexities of professional practice early in her career. Julia graduated with a degree in architecture from Cornell University and kickstarted her path as an enthusiastic young designer. But soon ...

A Conversation with Julia Gamolina, Founder of Madame Architect
 

Canal House by Studio MK27 Captures a Tropical Miami, Wed, Feb 26 '20

Brazil-based Studio MK27, led by Marcio Kogan, is known for its authentic blending of modernism with the Brazilian regional aesthetic, often seen through cantilevered horizontal lines, louvered walls, and organic materials. While not in Brazil, this Miami-based property, called Canal ...

Canal House by Studio MK27 Captures a Tropical Miami
 

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Designer, Tue, Feb 25 '20

Within the architecture studio, designers exist as a polymorphic phenomenon so varied and nuanced that there subsists no exhaustive description of their fundamental nature. On a foundational level, designers design, but they are also so much more than that. Some might run their own projects ...

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Designer
 

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Job Captain, Thu, Feb 6 '20

As projects move from pre-design to construction, the coordination and maintenance of the operational progress of the project team, both internal and external, and the work itself must be managed closely. Project Managers (PM) often oversee multiple projects, regularly interacting with the client ...

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Job Captain
 

Considering the Architect’s Role in Addressing Homelessness in Los Angeles, Fri, Jan 31 '20

With the dramatic rise of homelessness in Los Angeles, addressing the issue has become a paramount concern. Political pressure is rising, and the onset of public programs, task forces, and initiatives have shown promise, but still face mounting roadblocks. In response, many are pounding their ...

Considering the Architect’s Role in Addressing Homelessness in Los Angeles
 

Exploring Remote Work and 'Radical Flexibility' in Architecture With Diana Nicklaus, Thu, Jan 30 '20

Alternative work models have been a topic of much discussion within many professions. Architecture isn’t any different. With talks of 4 day work weeks, addressing burnout, and providing healthy flexibility for modern professionals to navigate their personal lives, alternative ways of working are ...

Exploring Remote Work and 'Radical Flexibility' in Architecture With Diana Nicklaus
 

Studio Visits: Lehrer Architects, Wed, Jan 29 '20

When you first walk into Lehrer Architects’ studio you’re struck by something you can’t quite put your finger on. It only takes seconds to get a full picture of the studio’s essence. Absent of obstructions and barriers, large arrayed work surfaces centralize the primary workstations and ...

Studio Visits: Lehrer Architects
 

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Studio Director, Thu, Jan 23 '20

In our third installment of Archinect's Guide to Job Titles series, we attempt to tackle the nuanced role of the Studio Director. As with most positions within architecture firms, the lines are quite blurry when it comes to the role of Studio Director. For some, this leadership position acts as a ...

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Studio Director
 

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Streamline the Application Process Using Archinect’s Online Application Center, Wed, Jan 15 '20

The hiring process can be a complicated undertaking, for both employers and job seekers. Especially when it comes to the application process, employers face the challenge of managing countless submissions, organizing files, comparing top candidates, and efficiently communicating with their peers ...

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Streamline the Application Process Using Archinect’s Online Application Center
 

Studio Visits: Assembledge+, Mon, Jan 13 '20

When David Thompson graduated from Tulane University in 1991, he began searching for his place in the design world. Eager to tackle something manageable for a recent grad, he tried his hand at furniture design, winning some early commissions and gaining some experience as a young professional. To ...

Studio Visits: Assembledge+
 

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Plan According to the Job Market, Fri, Dec 20 '19

The job market is in a constant state of flux. The biggest factor that contributes to market conditions is the economy, but this may affect industries, specialties and regions in very different ways. When a business needs to hire new talent, it's the employer's responsibility to understand the ...

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Plan According to the Job Market
 

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: BIM Specialist, Mon, Dec 16 '19

The design, development, and construction of a building is an inherently complex ambition. For the architect, coordinating both the countless members of the project team and managing the production of the construction documents present its own set of challenges. Building Information Modeling has ...

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: BIM Specialist
 

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Consider Your Reputation, Fri, Dec 13 '19

The talent procurement process is an interactive back and forth between job seekers and employers, each striving to secure an ideal future relationship. Employers want team members that will help realize their vision, and job seekers want employers who will play a part in fulfilling their career ...

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Consider Your Reputation
 

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Clarity is Key, Mon, Dec 9 '19

In professional correspondence, clear communication tends to be a universally desired ingredient. We've all opened the puzzling email, read the templated cover letter, and even conversed through the cryptic phone call. Especially, when it comes to reviewing the applications ...

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Clarity is Key
 

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Intern, Fri, Dec 6 '19

As one progresses in their professional journey, the depth of knowledge required to practice architecture arises as a requisite reality. Aspiring practitioners enroll in college and proactively acquire foundational skills for their future careers as architects. Internships act as a salient ...

Archinect's Guide to Job Titles: Intern
 

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Curate Your Image, Tue, Nov 19 '19

In the hunt for new team members, an ideal aim for most firms is to establish oneself as a kind of talent magnet. Quality response from quality candidates is an ideal outcome for any job advertisement. A crucial aspect in achieving this is in the representation of one's public ...

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Curate Your Image
 

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Talk About Lifestyle, Wed, Nov 13 '19

Writing a job ad can seem like a toneless task. Just get it out it out there as fast a possible, we need people, some might think. But, really, the desired outcome is to attract the best talent, and that takes some finesse. Especially in our current market, where job-seekers have a ...

How to Craft an Effective Job Ad: Talk About Lifestyle
 

Balancing Studio With Other Classes, Mon, Oct 21 '19

In architecture school, everything takes second place to studio. It’s an unwritten rule: you do whatever it takes to have a great studio project, and if your other classes fall by the wayside, then so be it. Is this a well-placed tendency? Perhaps it depends on what we believe architecture ...

Balancing Studio With Other Classes
 

The ARE Anxiety Phenomenon, Mon, Oct 14 '19

The Architectural Registration Exam is the gateway to licensure for thousands of aspiring architects across the country. Six divisions, hours of studying, years of schooling, and practice. It's an undertaking both exhilarating and debilitating, but at the same time, in its achievement, rewarding ...

The ARE Anxiety Phenomenon
 

HDR Chicago on Learning From Other Industries, Employee Empowerment, and Representing the Community, Fri, Oct 11 '19

Over the past few years, the field has received a growing amount of attention that has highlighted long-standing labor issues within the architecture industry, ranging from unsustainable pay models to unwelcoming work environments. Looking for an alternative, the Architecture Lobby created the ...

HDR Chicago on Learning From Other Industries, Employee Empowerment, and Representing the Community
 

The Origin Story of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, Tue, Oct 1 '19

Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill are three names hardly unrecognizable. Still one of America’s largest architecture practices and pioneers of the modern skyscraper, but how did it get its start? Better yet, who is Skidmore? And who is Owings? How about Merrill? And how did the three meet? What is ...

The Origin Story of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
 

Tools of the Job Hunt: Understanding the Employer, Mon, Sep 16 '19

We've shared a lot of helpful information on job hunting: how to craft the perfect resume and cover letter, how nail the job interview, the importance of the portfolio... While all of these are useful, they tend to lack the underlying principles one should understand as they navigate their job ...

Tools of the Job Hunt: Understanding the Employer
 

How to Face a Jury in Architecture School, Tue, Sep 3 '19

A while back, we talked about how our ability to communicate as creative people can sometimes make or break our success. Effective communication is one factor of life as an architecture student, but another one is in how we face up to a jury of people ready to critique our work. It is something ...

How to Face a Jury in Architecture School
 

When Our Passion For Architecture Dwindles, Thu, Aug 22 '19

Sometimes, when we spend so many years pursuing something, striving for a far off goal, and then reach it, we can become dissatisfied, or even depressed. "Is this what I've been working toward? Will this be my whole life now?" we might think to ourselves. It's a common thing for many graduates ...

When Our Passion For Architecture Dwindles
 

Growing Leadership and Practice: Laney LA's Search for a Studio Director, Tue, Aug 20 '19

What happens when a team outgrows its leader? It is a predicament that takes maturity and skill to overcome. On the one hand, one can become insecure, unsure, and unwilling to grow, thinking only of their personal image and status within the group. The fear of being surpassed or outshined ...

Growing Leadership and Practice: Laney LA's Search for a Studio Director
 

How Shore Point Architecture Values Its Team Members, Fri, Aug 9 '19

Over the past few years, the field has received a growing amount of attention that has highlighted long-standing labor issues within the architecture industry, ranging from unsustainable pay models to unwelcoming work environments. Looking for an alternative, the Architecture Lobby created the ...

How Shore Point Architecture Values Its Team Members
 

What the Broke Architecture Student Can Learn From the Work of Glenn Murcutt, Tue, Aug 6 '19

Architecture school can be a rewarding and overwhelming experience. The long hours, harsh criticisms, and competition amongst peers are only a few factors the student faces daily. And, of course, there’s the question of the material costs that come along with model building, 3D printing ...

What the Broke Architecture Student Can Learn From the Work of Glenn Murcutt
 

The Importance of Physical Fitness in Mental Performance, Tue, Jul 30 '19

We’ve talked about burnout, fatigue, and overwork, all things that take a toll on the mind. But how might one increase mental stamina, counteracting this effect? When all of our efforts to be efficient time managers is overcome by a long workday, we will need that extra bandwidth for optimum ...

The Importance of Physical Fitness in Mental Performance
 

The Collaborative Team Dynamic, Thu, Jul 25 '19

Collaboration is one of the cornerstones of any great project. As we explore the dynamics of teamwork, workplace relations, and the creative process, it seems reasonable to dive deeper into a study of collaboration. While multi-dimensional, the act of working with other people presents many ...

The Collaborative Team Dynamic
 

Vidal Sassoon: The Architect of Hair, Tue, Jul 23 '19

“Had I gone to college, I would have definitely been an architect. That would have been my dream.” - Vidal Sassoon Creative inspiration can come from many places. Our wide-ranging interests come out to play and begin to interact with our core discipline or craft. The architect might love ...

Vidal Sassoon: The Architect of Hair
 

Burnout, Fatigue and the Architecture Workplace, Fri, Jul 19 '19

With the discussion on burnout growing, it’s a natural progression to dive deeper into some of its related characteristics. Fatigue is an obvious symptom of overwork and presents a daunting threat to creativity, productivity, and most importantly, mental health. With architecture’s ...

Burnout, Fatigue and the Architecture Workplace
 

Career Evolution Through Autodidacticism and Accelerated Learning, Wed, Jul 17 '19

The Information Age has produced a generation capable of extraordinary feats not before possible. In such a dynamic professional setting, learning new skills is an attribute many must develop. Like an operative in the Matrix, downloading the skills to fly a helicopter or defend oneself with an ...

Career Evolution Through Autodidacticism and Accelerated Learning
 

Understanding the End User: How One Woman Took It To The Extreme, Sun, Jul 14 '19

Architects, by and large, are tasked with a tremendous undertaking: to design a world for the masses. The ultimate driving factor of any project is people – to serve them, entertain them, and accommodate them. Shelter is one of our most essential needs as humans and so the architect must, by the ...

Understanding the End User: How One Woman Took It To The Extreme
 

The Architecture Student’s Presentation Roadmap, Wed, Jul 10 '19

If you’re an architecture student, then you’ve probably had to endure the daunting arena that is the critique, or the pin-up, or the review. Whatever it’s called for you, one thing is for sure: the quality of your presentations in school significantly impact how your work is received ...

The Architecture Student’s Presentation Roadmap
 

Long-Term Thinking and the Gaze of Uncertainty, Fri, Jul 5 '19

As architects, long-term thinking is an inherent part of our work. It can be years before we see the fruits of our labor on a project. It’s just the name of the game. When we go into a new design problem, we understand that it will take numerous iterations before we find the right solution. But ...

Long-Term Thinking and the Gaze of Uncertainty
 

Burnout, and the Architecture Work Culture, Tue, Jul 2 '19

How many stories have we heard of the extreme working conditions in our industry? Starting from school, "all-nighters" become an inevitable part of our participation as students. It's our ticket to the club. A simple Google search reveals that architecture students are one of the hardest working ...

Burnout, and the Architecture Work Culture
 

Frederick Douglass and the Empowered Reader, Thu, Jun 27 '19

Architecture, like any field, is one filled with endless recordings, writings, images, and material of its long history. Books hold the information of the ages, yet so many of us are "too busy" to read any of it. We take our access to books for granted. But there are those of us who genuinely want ...

Frederick Douglass and the Empowered Reader
 

True Grit: How One Designer Taught Himself to Draw and Became an International Artist, Tue, Jun 25 '19

Hand drawing has been in the architect’s arsenal since the beginning. The ability to sketch by hand presents the designer with a tool untied to any technology. This is a medium that is an intrinsic part of the individual. How many times have we observed someone, masterful with the hand, sketch ...

True Grit: How One Designer Taught Himself to Draw and Became an International Artist
 

The Art of Pushing Boundaries, Tue, Jun 18 '19

In our creative endeavors, we are often seeking to push boundaries, to challenge the status quo. As creators, we want to introduce something fresh and new to the world. We hope to express ourselves in authentic ways. In a studio setting, we talk about innovation, but how do we go about that? How ...

The Art of Pushing Boundaries
 

Radical Curiosity and The Modern Polymath, Wed, Jun 12 '19

There seems to be a polymathic nature to architects and designers. The modern renaissance man and woman. It’s a quality almost inseparable from our field, is it not? As I thought about this idea, I wondered if it was possible to be an architect and not have broad interests. Can one merely be ...

Radical Curiosity and The Modern Polymath
 

Understanding Architecture Internships, Mon, Jun 10 '19

Architectural internships are modern day’s reinterpretation of the late apprenticeship model, but with some modifications. In earlier centuries, when a young person wanted to pursue a profession or craft, they typically enlisted in a seven-year contract with a “master” who took them under ...

Understanding Architecture Internships
 

Better Critics Than Crickets; Thoughts on Criticism and the Willingness to Be Teachable, Thu, Jun 6 '19

“The world today doesn’t make sense, so why should I paint pictures that do? - Pablo Picasso

Better Critics Than Crickets; Thoughts on Criticism and the Willingness to Be Teachable
 

How to Pass the Architectural Registration Exam, Fri, May 31 '19

The Architectural Registration Exam (ARE). It’s the culmination of years of study, marking the end of one chapter and the beginning of the next; six grueling tests that push most young designers to their limit. The studying is strenuous, the fear of failure unbearable, and yet those of us ...

How to Pass the Architectural Registration Exam
 

The Architecture Student’s Guide to Studio, Thu, May 30 '19

Throughout your years in architecture school, one thing is always true — everything revolves around studio. It’s your living quarters for five years, where you’ll succeed and fail with a small group of comrades crazy enough to choose a career path in architecture. Studio is a kind of ...

The Architecture Student’s Guide to Studio
 

The Importance of Building Professional Relationships in Architecture, Fri, May 24 '19

Relationships are the cornerstone of almost every aspect of our lives. In a career setting, the quality of our relationships with those around us can be directly related to our growth, opportunities, and overall success. Regardless of our ability, we cannot get far without the help of others. Some ...

The Importance of Building Professional Relationships in Architecture
 

Steve Jobs and The Collaborative Framework, Thu, May 16 '19

Collaboration is one of those things we, as architects and designers, embrace quite openly. "Two heads are better than one," the saying goes, and it is indeed a true statement. Any significant project, invention, or innovation was likely done in a collaborative setting. And even on a personal ...

Steve Jobs and The Collaborative Framework
 

Einstein, Rejection, and Crafting a Future, Tue, May 14 '19

Rejection is one of those things all of us have to face. It might be in a studio review; our professor is not happy with our work or the direction we've taken. It can even be in the workplace, after working hard on something, those above us ridicule and criticize it. And there are still those ...

Einstein, Rejection, and Crafting a Future
 

Do You Feel Like Quitting Your Job? Read This First, Thu, May 9 '19

Can't bear to walk into the office another day? Deal with that project manager? Coworker? Has the work environment become so toxic that you almost feel sick at the end of every Sunday? Or perhaps you're just ready for something new, to take your career to the next level. Whether positive or ...

Do You Feel Like Quitting Your Job? Read This First
 

Professional Growth and The Power of Observation, Tue, May 7 '19

The apprentice model has been a fruitful approach for thousands of years, with a clear track of mentorship and milestones, young professionals were able to methodically progress in their careers. However, we must acknowledge that everything we need to know will not be freely given to us. In ...

Professional Growth and The Power of Observation
 

“To be or not to be” A Licensed Architect, Wed, May 1 '19

Herein lies a dilemma many face in architecture. Should one obtain a license or pursue something otherwise. It doesn’t seem like the professional path is so cut and dry anymore. At least this is true for the one wrestling with this question. Coincidentally, it is a dichotomy that is usually ...

“To be or not to be” A Licensed Architect
 

The Secret Nature of The Job Interview, Wed, Apr 17 '19

The job interview. Often one of the most daunting things for a young professional. The onslaught of scenarios one imagines can start to overwhelm: “What will I say?” “How should I act?” “I don’t know what to expect.” It’s a common case of the jitters, the collywobbles, the ...

The Secret Nature of The Job Interview
 

A 3-Step Guide to Choosing Your Next Architecture Job, Tue, Mar 26 '19

As a professional, there will inevitably come a time when you will need to search for a new job. This should be a simple enough endeavor, but as you sit there, contemplating your next steps, it begins to appear quite complicated. What firms do you apply to? Which ones will be the most fruitful? ...

A 3-Step Guide to Choosing Your Next Architecture Job
 

What to Expect After Graduating From Architecture School, Tue, Mar 12 '19

As a student, you have been working toward an ultimate and almost seemingly distant goal for quite some time now. And as you find yourself nearing the end of your education, one might wonder, quite appropriately, what life after graduation is going to look like.

What to Expect After Graduating From Architecture School
 

Employment 

Archinect, Pasadena, CA, US, Editor / Writer

Jul 2019 - current
 

Archinect, Los Angeles, CA, Contributing Writer

Mar 2019 - Jun 2019
 

Architecture for Education, Inc., Pasadena, CA, US, Designer/Project Leader

Apr 2018 - Apr 2019
 

NAC Architecture, Los Angeles, CA, US, Designer

Aug 2016 - Apr 2018
 

Woodbury University Shop, Burbank, CA, US, Wood and Metal Specialist

Design, Fabrication, Welding | Metal Working, Wood Working

Jun 2015 - Apr 2016
 

Lehrer Architects, Los Angeles, CA, US, Intern

Sep 2015 - Nov 2015
 

Sawasy Studio Partners, South Pasadena, CA, US, Intern

Aug 2014 - Nov 2014
 

Education 

Woodbury University, Burbank, CA, US, BArch, Architecture

Aug 2013 - May 2016
 

College of the Canyons, Valencia, CA, US, Architectural Technology

Jun 2010 - Oct 2012
 

Awards 

Outstanding Achievement in Philosophy, Award

Awarded by Woodbury University

2016
 

Areas of Specialization 

Skills