Quickfire Questions with James Gould
When did you join Austin-Smith:Lord?
What is your role within our Creative Collective?
What are you working on at the moment?
Education sector projects for University clients, and helping out on the colossal Fitzalan High School in Cardiff (Picture in header: Cardiff School of Technology Phase 3)
What inspires you most in your work?
Putting myself in the position of end-users, and imagining how they will interact with the spaces we create. It means a lot to get this right and receive positive feedback. Inspiration for design comes from all over the place however.
What aspects of your work are you most proud of?
I would say mainly my attention to detail. I like to get right down into the small things that make big differences to a design.
What is your favourite place / building / landscape and why?
I’ve always had an affinity for Centre Parcs, ever since I was a kid. Something about staying in the forest makes it feel separated from the outside world, and who doesn’t like going down the rapids a million times? (Picture in header taken by myself – Centre Parcs Rapids)
What are the key issues facing our design professions in the 2020s?
The Climate Emergency – without a doubt. Reuse and refurbishment should always be the first port of call for existing buildings. Also, in the short term, the effect the pandemic is having on the way businesses work. Ideas are changing on how much traditional office space is required, the effect of flexible working policies, and how to repurpose newly vacated spaces.
What fictional place would you like to visit?
Oof, tough one. Being a self-confessed gaming nerd, I’d have to say ‘Rapture’ (an Art Deco, mid-century utopian/dystopian under-water city from Bioshock), OR simply, ‘The Continent’ from The Witcher 3.
(Picture in header: Welcome To Rapture by mbanshee)
What’s something you’re planning on doing in the next year that you’ve never done?
Buy a house.. with any luck! Also, go and visit my brother in the U.S. – Definitely seeing the sights of NYC, and possibly going for a skiing trip whilst over there.
Complete the following – “I couldn’t get through the week without…”
Copious amounts of tea, a takeaway, and the gym – It’s all about the balance.