Like most things in life, it is easy to get carried away when you start designing a house. People tend to think that changing up exterior materials, adding more colors or throwing in a few bay windows, a turret or two or a couple of angled rooms and, hey, the more then merrier, right?
Back in high school, I happened to fall in love with photography. (Disclosure note here: I’m not an architect, I’m the business manager here in the office.) I think I loved taking photos because it was the closest I could get to creating art – seeing as I have no other artistic talents. My photography professor insisted we only shoot in black and white. I hated this at first. I loved color and couldn’t see how a black and white photo could compare with the vibrant blue of the ocean or splash of color from a flower.
But once I got into it, I got it. By stripping away the color, it forced you to focus on the composition and artistry of the photograph. You saw details you never noticed in a color photograph.
The same is true in architecture – when you keep it simple, the beautiful details and overall composition of the home are blatantly obvious to everyone. This means that if the house is done right, it stands out as a beautiful home. If it’s not, you can’t hide it behind ten different colors or lots of strange shapes and angles.
We recently wrapped up construction on a new cottage down here on the gulf. It’s simple, elegant, timeless, and classic in so many ways. The best part, to me at least, is that it feels like a very welcoming home. The massing is simple. The details are simple. The home is built right and the owners put a lot of care and consideration into where and how to spend their money. The end result is – quite simply – a very beautiful home.