Life of an Architect

Life of an Architect

A gifted storyteller communicating the role and value of architecture to a new audience, host Bob Borson uses the experiences acquired over a 25-year career to inform his podcast. A small firm owner, architect, and college design instructor, co-host Andrew Hawkins brings his insight from his 20 years in various roles within the profession. It responds to the public curiosity and common misunderstanding about what architects do and how it is relevant to people’s lives, engaging a wide demographic of people in a meaningful way without requiring an understanding of the jargon or knowledge of the history of the profession. With a creative mix of humor and practicality, Borson’s stories are informative, engaging, and approachable, using first-person narratives and anecdotes that have introduced transparency into what it really means to be a practicing architect. To learn more about Bob, Andrew, and what life is like as an architect, please visit


May 19, 2024 79 mins
We are finally conceding to a request that’s been made a thousand times – do an episode on starting an architectural business – a topic that I have resisted for essentially 6 years, and I think I’ve finally broken. This is not as easy of a topic to discuss as you might think because there are a million different ways you could answer a question this broad. In an attempt to make this conversation of value, we are going to start at t...
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So here we are ... Episode 150, and I am a little surprised that I made it this far into this Life of an Architect experiment, but due to the support and interest we have received over the last 6 years, we find ourselves as what I believe to be a fairly significant milestone. When it came time to pick today’s subject matter, there was really on one topic that was up for consideration … Welcome to EP 150: Drawing Stuff! [Note: If y...
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April 21, 2024 64 mins
This will be the 5th time in 5,209 days that I have put my opinions about taking on extra work outside of your normal job and typically during ridiculous hours of the day and night. This practice has come to be known as “moonlighting” and depending on your age and where you are at in your career, it is either the light at the end of the tunnel or an oncoming train. Andrew and I originally had something else scheduled for today’s sh...
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April 7, 2024 70 mins
You check the time and realize that you have 4 minutes before your next meeting. Maybe it’s an internal meeting, maybe clients are coming in. Is it in person or online? Depending on how you answer those questions, time to start scrambling so that you are where you need to be and have the information required to make this meeting a good use of your time. But guess what? I promise that you will end up waiting on someone … maybe you a...
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March 24, 2024 56 mins
How good do you need to be at drawing if you want to become an architect? Or … How can I be an architect – I can’t draw? Is there an easy answer to these questions? Of course there is, but that doesn’t mean the getting is easy.
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March 10, 2024 69 mins
Tracking productivity, Bucket list vacation, Leadership styles, and Learning how to Draw Details ... We answer these questions and more today on Ep 146: Ask the Show Spring 2024
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February 25, 2024 64 mins
If you have ever wondered what Delegated Design and Design Assist mean and how the distinction between the two could impact you and your liability and responsibility then this is a good resource of information as we break it down and discuss it in fairly simple terms.
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February 11, 2024 73 mins
From a design standpoint, some things are just cooler than other things – and these things don’t need to be justified to anyone because people either understand it or they don’t … but that doesn’t mean there isn’t an interesting and amazing story behind these objects that might contribute to their coolness in a meaningful way. Today Andrew and I each selected three items and we are going to share with you some amazing stories …  We...
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The episode "Architectural Drawings: Excessive or Essential" will focus on drawings and the question that first comes to mind is to talk about what we draw, why we draw it, and who we draw it for and why that impacts all other considerations
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January 14, 2024 62 mins
In Episode 142: When I Grow Up, Andrew and I discuss how things take place that divert you from your expected path as you move through your career. It's a natural evolution to move into new roles and responsibilities that break the idea you have for yourself when you decided to chart your future.
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December 17, 2023 68 mins
As the end of the 2023 season comes to an end, Life of an Architect looks at Fan Favorite Episodes, the Blog posts, and the graphics created to support the topics.
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December 10, 2023 68 mins
Drawings have always played a role in the process of study and discussion of what we do and why we do it. Today we are going to look at the different forms of drawing and talk about when they are used and how we align these different drawing types and the messages they convey as we discuss "Communicating Through Drawings"
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November 26, 2023 84 mins
It’s almost that gift-giving time of the year and if you have an architect in your life, you know that getting them a gift is potentially the most agonizing experience possible - but that’s why we’re here. Now in its 14th consecutive year, Welcome to Episode 139 Holiday Gift Guide for Architects 2023!
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November 12, 2023 72 mins
Are students graduating from architecture school prepared for the profession? Is the educational system aligned with the workplace? What is the best software to teach students? Can we all just get along? We started this exploration of the idea that Architecture School may need some modifications in Episode 137. The system needs to change to provide the skills, knowledge, and pathways for the future of the profession, but what else ...
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The architectural education system hasn't been around for that long, yet it has it's issues and concerns. So that leads us to ask the question... Is Architecture School Broken? Join us for Part One of the conversation in Episode 137. We discuss the short history of arch edu, some common concerns with the system, and the shortcomings of the studio-based learning environments.
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October 15, 2023 65 mins
What is the difference between Leadership and Management – there is definitely some overlap, but the key distinction lies in … wait, you thought I was going to tell you in the opening? It’s going to take some time to talk through those distinctions before we get there …Welcome to EP 136: Leadership vs. Management [Note: If you are reading this via email, click here to access the on-site audio player] googletag.cmd.push(fu...
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October 1, 2023 76 mins
It was podcast Episode 130: Employee Evaluations, and Andrew and I were discussing the process and criteria used to assess and measure an individual employee’s performance when we made the point that there would be value in creating a process where upward evaluations could be implemented, one that allowed the employee to share their thoughts and opinions on what mattered to them from their managers, from their team leads, even thei...
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September 17, 2023 81 mins
Today we are talking about firm management – but at a fairly introductory level so that we can focus on a broad range of considerations that are applicable to a broader range of individuals who are transitioning into management roles.
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September 4, 2023 79 mins
Management transition, Where to start a design, the Role of Artificial Intelligence in architecture, and What Cocktail Should Architects drink ... We answer your questions today on Ep 133: Ask the Show. Fall 2023
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You have made the decision where to study architecture. You've chosen the architecture school and your degree path. So now what? How much work is this going to be? How much will this cost? We covered some issues in Part 1, and now we will finish the monumental task of summarizing what it's like to start architecture school.
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