We are proud to announce our newest addition to the Talmadge Construction team. Welcome Andrew Wightman. Andrew is a designer with incredible talent and a passion for all things design. He is a consummate people person and we can’t wait to show you his talent in action. We hope you enjoy learning more about him in this interview.
What inspired you to pursue to a career in design?
I was fortunate to have exposure to design very early in life. My father was an architect and my mother’s family was in the men’s apparel industry. Initially I followed the apparel path because it looked like so much fun as a young man. And it was! I spent 16 years enjoying it. But all the while what inspired me most came more from the architecture and home design field. Then I decided to get into residential design. So here I am.
What was the first thing you ever designed?
My first design was actually a collection of winter technical apparel. While not high profile, it was high style and functional, and to this day I really think it came out awesome. In my current field, I designed a bathroom that used a live edge slab for a counter top. That was back in 2002, and you see them everywhere now.
What or who inspires you and why?
I’m a design junkie and I find inspiration everywhere. I love shape, form, materials and applications, sometimes obvious and sometimes not. Maybe it’s some odd thing used for whatever and I see it totally differently, most likely because I have no idea what its primary intent is. For example, I once found a piece of metal on the side of the road. It had a nice patina and was “clean” and undamaged. No idea what it was from…didn’t look like a car part. I had it cut in half and modified to become counter top supports. Turns out it was some part of an agricultural trailer.
Of course architecture and interior design are huge draws for me, but I’m also fascinated by industrial design. I love apparel and the world of fashion. As far as people, Tom Kundig (Architect), Mark Parker (Nike), Ian Callum (Aston Martin), and Jonny Ive (Apple) to name a few.
What is your approach and process in helping homeowners choose a style and overall design aesthetic for their remodel?
In most cases it’s really about balancing what’s appropriate for the house itself between architectural style, location, and the preferences of the homeowner. It may sound kooky, but I always ask the homeowner to give the house a voice and to ask the house what it wants to be happy. Then I’ll integrate the human part and the individuality of the homeowner.
After the project is completed, how would you like homeowners to describe their experience working with you?
I hope they express how they enjoyed the journey and are outstandingly pleased with the destination. I always aim to take away the burden and stress and let them enjoy the fun stuff of re-imagining their space, picking out all the fun stuff like cabinets, fixtures, and new shiny bits.
What room or living space do you find the most intriguing to design and why?
I absolutely love the kitchen the best. I love kitchen culture…food, beverage, creativity….the art and science of it. It brings people together which is priceless. As far as intriguing, that would have to be the bathroom. It’s likely the first and last place we are in a day. It’s where we prepare to present ourselves to the world. It’s where we take care of our body. It’s the smallest room in the house, and it’s also one of the most important.
What is your new role in the company?
I’ll be coming on board as a designer. The fun creative part is important, but a very modest percentage of the job duties. I’ll also be acting as a facilitator, counselor, fire fighter, ambassador…so many additional titles fit just as well.
Just for fun:
At the risk of sounding depressing….my fave is a non-color…..gray. I love color but never one in particular. Gray can be such a great foundation color…..I’ve loved it WAY before the current trend.
Banana or orange?
For sure not a banana guy. Orange if I have to choose but mango if it’s a wide open choice. My family is from Hawaii so mango, pineapple, guava……good memories of those.