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The Architect’s Assistant: Crazy? Or inspired?


It’s past midnight and I’d have thought the boss is tired. Amazingly, though, from what I see flying into my Inbox, he’s still firing off emails.

But that’s to be expected, because, you know what? He doesn’t just love his job as an Architect; he lives and breathes his job. I swear, if he went away on holiday he’d be driving us all mad by ‘phoning the office ten times a day asking for updates about everything from details of that site meeting in Lekki to how many sweets are left in the office candy jar.

The Architect at work by Chronos Studeos
I’m sorry, I tell a lie. The boss doesn’t ‘do’ holidays. I read a quote recently which I would swear came from him, but no, it was the architect Philip Johnson who declared: “I hate vacations. If you can build buildings, why sit on the beach?”

I really must ask the boss when he last had a holiday.

But I digress…

I’m sat here, typing away at gone midnight after feeling inspired to write a blog post about what it’s like working for an architecture company. So, sit back and let me begin with an admission.

Secret No. 1 from The Architect’s Assistant

Until I landed this job I’ve come to love I didn’t know much about architecture. Heck, it’s possible that if you’d asked me what an architect did I may well have answered, “Doesn’t he dig up old bones for a living?”

Chronos Studeos Why Do Architects Wear Black bookOkay, so I’m perhaps not that ignorant (honest boss!) but I really didn’t know much about architects except what I see on TV drama series’ in which the male version is invariably dressed all in black, is pretty darn sexy, is very, very intelligent, and lives in a beautiful house the size of which would mean the rest of us would need a map, a compass and the telephone number of the local Search and Rescue team before we dared venture from the living room to the kitchen.

Now, let me tell you something from someone who sees this day in and day out:

  • The daily life of an architect is nothing like as exciting or glamorous as those TV scriptwriters would have us believe.
  • Yes, architects do usually dress all in black (why is that?!).
  • Yes, they are highly intellectual.
  • But regarding whether they are “pretty darn sexy”? Hey! Are you trying to get me fired by wanting me to answer that?! I have to face my colleagues again tomorrow, don’t you know…
Secret No. 2 from The Architect’s Assistant

I’m writing this because the boss asked me a few hours ago to start thinking of a subject for a new blog post we can all work on. It was at this moment that I was inspired (pause for dramatic effect).

Yes, I was inspired to write about anything other than how to render an architectural visualization in 3ds max or design a new church in Lagos or a bank in Abuja because, erm… Okay, let me put it this way: I am not an architect. In fact, I’m waiting for the day when the architects I’m surrounded by finally say out loud: “What are YOU still doing around here?!” or, “I’ll have two sugars with that coffee, thanks.” But, no, to my shock it hasn’t happened yet.

They haven’t found me out yet that I’m not worthy to breathe their air, or even stare (secretly agog) at their latest sketches or 3D visualizations (I am, though, secretly proud of the fact I can now even spell ‘visualization’ and would be able to distinguish 3ds max from V-Ray).

So that’s why we are here right now. If this passes the beady eye of the boss without any exclamations of, “What on earth were you thinking?!”, this will be the first in a regular series of posts by yours truly.

For now, though, I’ll prepare for tomorrow and the moment I try to sell this crazy idea for a blog series to my boss and other colleagues. Between you and me I’m hoping he’ll still be so busy that he’ll not bother reading this and instead be wholly focused on that bank of computers upon which amazing structures start their remarkable journey into life.

And then I’ll breathe a sigh of relief and make myself a coffee and once again think to myself:

Wow, I am so blessed to be working with these inspiring people.

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Comments (3)

Nice write up…..i too work as an architect’s assistant buh…..i’m an architect. That my dear, doesn’t stop me from being confused at times….most times. I too am writing about it but a book……for the most part,you’ve inspired me to keep on writing. Thanks a lot

Funny.. i am not an architect but I totally can relate to this. I am hoping u can read my comment if your boss has not fired you by this time. I will like to read more from you.

The Architect's Assistant (not yet fired)

Hello and thanks for your comments. I really do appreciate them.

@ima I do hope you keep on writing as this is a subject definitely worth writing about. I’ll have to ask you for a signed copy of your book when it comes out.

@tolu Ah, yes… I’m still here (and I promise it’s not just because I know the passwords to the blog. Although, a gentle reminder to The Boss: I DO!). So yes, I’ll be back on here soon.

Thanks again to you both.

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