The latest issue of Architect magazine has a catchy title on its cover: New Model Practice, Great Recession? Let's Start a Firm. Three young firms got started when their principals decided to stop knocking on architectural offices's doors, and started looking for project opportunities on their own.
No money, no problem. Today's online freeware is proven to be a great deal. Why pay when you can get it for free? It helps them connect to clients and their own team from each of their satellite 'offices'. Sure not all features will be available, and that's the price of free. International competitions are helping them gain visibility and experience. Small and government projects provide them with a source of income. A new book project is in the process. And a design co-op has been established and helps them network and seek more project opportunities.
I like that positiveness. But are these new practice models? We have heard of freeware, co-ops, satellite offices, competitions... What we don't get to hear much of is a positive attitude in the midst of the economic slowdown that directly affects architects and designers. For that, I appreciate the article.
It could be that after all architecture can be recession-proof... at least some.
PD: another article on similar subject.