Design for Innovation
 

FIVE QUESTIONS WITH

PAIGE SCHMELING

July 1, 2019

After earning her Master of Architecture from University of Oregon in Portland in 2017, Paige returned to Columbus as a Design Specialist at WSA Studio. Her favorite part of working at WSA is the variety of experiences that she gains working on each project.

Paige has long held an interest in sustainability and health, which led her to a career in architecture and design. She understands the role that the built environment plays in individual human health and behavior, the health of cities, and the health of the planet.

On the weekends, you can find Paige at a brewery enjoying music from her favorite local bands.


How did living and studying in Portland, Oregon shape your understanding of architecture?
I think the main concept I learned in Portland is the importance of density and the urban landscape. This includes public transit, moments of relief in a city, availability of resources, and they way design impacts how people interact with each other. Every building design can advocate for these qualities, enrich the urban fabric and change how people use space.

 Tell me about your interest in sustainable design.
From the beginning, my dad instilled a love of nature in me and emphasized the importance of health. The health of our Earth and of the health of people were both driving factors that led me to pursue architecture, since people spend a majority of their time in buildings. Sustainable design can respect and maintain nature while simultaneously impacting human health through material choices, space planning, and natural light. Building design can also encourage physical activity and overall wellness.

Where is the first place you turn for inspiration?
For each project, the context and the inhabitants are the main inspiration for the design. In my personal time, I like to refresh with camping and hiking, which always sparks creativity for me.

 What is your favorite part of being a Design Specialist at WSA?
In the words of Mike Bednar (A.K.A. “Wishbone”), the many hats we each get to wear. I enjoy the variety of projects and design phases that I am able to work on. I haven’t been able to choose a favorite phase of design, but instead prefer when my day consists of a mixture, encouraging different ways of thinking from early concept to construction.

My coworkers are cool too, I guess. Everyone here contributes to our office culture to make it encouraging, creative, and often wonderfully ridiculous.

 What does your ideal Saturday look like?
Recently, Saturdays have consisted of house renovation projects with good tunes in the background. While I do enjoy that, I think a delicious brunch, a Metro Park stroll, and a concert would be my ideal day.