Meet Rob Gordon, project architect at Axis Architecture + Interiors. Rob has been with Axis since October and grew up in nearby Cicero, Ind. He earned an undergraduate degree at Ball State University and a graduate degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Outside of work, Rob enjoys spending time with his family, reading, and (of course) sketching.
How would you describe your design style?
One of my favorite architects used to say, “We always give the client what they want, but not what they expect.” I’ve always loved that quote and try to do the same with my design.
What is the best career advice you have ever received?
I ask a lot of questions, and one of my favorite questions to ask is, “What made you successful?” The most common answer is that their business is a “people business” and that you should always treat people with respect. This seems like obvious advice, but I’ve realized that it’s easy advice to ignore. So, the best advice is to treat people the way you want to be treated.
You’re looking for inspiration. What do you do? Who do you turn to?
My grandfather was from the Netherlands, so I have a large collection of images of modern Dutch buildings that I always turn to for inspiration. I probably find the most inspiration in architects who take risks, and I often look at other industries, such as movie set design. I even am inspired by the bold colors that Nike is known for lately.
What sets Axis apart from other architecture firms?
We trust each other, which creates a very family-like environment. This allows us to feel more comfortable taking risks, which leads to some impressive designs. At the end of the day, we pride ourselves on creating unique designs.
What is the most surprising thing you’ve learned while working at Axis?
I’ve been surprised by how critical communication is to design. From professors in school to clients in the office, communicating an idea in a simple way that everyone can understand is incredibly important. The most successful projects are the ones that communicate the main idea in the best way possible.
What do you enjoy doing in for free time?
I enjoy spending time with my 11-month-old son and chasing him around the house on the weekends. My wife and I enjoy going on dates to the movies or plays when we can. We have a lot of family in Indy, so we enjoy going out to dinner as a family. I also enjoy running or riding my bike when it’s nice outside. I’m an avid reader and Sherlock Holmes has always been a favorite.