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IMAGINE!

Your home—tiny or otherwise—should be spectacular, not humdrum! Art Craft Tiny Houses can build you a veritable palace with old-world craftsmanship. Just imagine! You could have a 1930s Art Deco-style movie set within your own home. Or a living room wall resembling the 1927 entrance to Paris’ Folies Bergere. Or a kitchen resembling a 1920s diner. A room in your house could be as extravagant as Guimard's Paris Metro entrances. Your child's room could be made over as Buck Rogers' 1930s space ship. Really, anything we can conceive, we can achieve—provided the budget is adequate.

All my life I have been drawn to the study of architecture and period furnishings. My combined experience as an illustrator, font and lettering designer, and cabinet-maker allow me to envision, draw, and realize very special, artistic constructions. My chief influences in this field are the 1880s to the 1950s, especially Victorian, Art Nouveau, Vienna 1900, Craftsman, Art Deco, and Mid-Century design and architecture.

 
 

It always bugs me to see attempts at period design that miss the mark because the architect, designer, or carpenter has little familiarity with the period, can't sketch except on computer and therefore cannot draw the forms accurately. And he often has too much ego to at least copy period styles verbatim to ensure accuracy. As an illustrator, I can draw. My ego is not in conflict with accuracy; it’s not about “my” way, it’s about fidelity to the period style. I believe my affinity for period design allows me to recognize its nuances and proportions. (Also, I have a way better reference library than anyone else.)

I have come to observe that there are many builders, though few designers. Your average contractor or cabinet maker nowadays is usually not an architect or designer. The joinery and exterior finish may be flawless, though the design itself is mundane. Frank Lloyd Wright explained it this way: “By that generous extension of the building crafts into architecture . . . carpenters have become [designers of houses].”

Before the 1950s, craftsmen and architects were trained in draftsmanship, anatomical drawing, color theory, composition, painting and design. Louis Comfort Tiffany—though he possessed the painting skills of a Rembrandt—chose mainly to create objet d’ art. And architects Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, Greene & Greene, and Eliel Saarinen (to name just a few) were gifted artists—in addition to having visionary ideas of space, and knowledge of practical structural mechanics. Few today have such training. (I don't either, but I'm an adept student.)

“Modern” architecture was invented in the early 1900s by classically-trained architects who had wearied of drawing curlicues. But Modern was embraced with zeal by younger architects who could not draw an acanthus leaf and so contented themselves with T-square-drawn geometric shapes that were accessible to their meager talents. As a defensive cover for their lack of drawing skills, they created the manifesto “Less is more.” And sometimes that's true! But as Wright explained, “[Most modern architects] have turned against integral ornament with such a fury as is born only of impotence.”

Well, these are some observations after a lifetime of contemplating design. The main thing is, I believe I can offer something very unique that will be hard to find elsewhere. Frankly, I’m still evolving artistically; I haven’t done my best or most elaborate work yet. Maybe your project will embody all this creative potential. I look forward to talking with you and together imagining your project!