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Never In a Million Years


I studied Interior Architecture in Wisconsin, USA.

Born and raised around the Gaborone area. I graduated with a BFA in Interior Architecture in May 2015.

I am currently working in Gaborone, training as an Architect Technologist.


As far as my understanding goes, (Interior Architects’ haven’t been approved to register as a working professional yet,) I’ve got another year to go before I can register as an Architect Technologist.

It’s a deviation from how I wanted things to go, but one can’t control everything. It’s been an interesting journey so far for me; not to say I haven’t appreciated everything I’ve learned, but then again, it’s made me realize just how much I don’t want to deviate from what I’ve set my sights upon.


Architecture, as incredible as it can be, was never something I thought about doing when I was growing up. What captured me about Interior Architecture was the ability to create environments that helped people, made them thrive and do better in their professions. Who wants to go to work, school, vacation, or even the dreaded hospital and just feel blah, icky? Interior Architecture gives me the ability to create places that make people feel safe, loved, cared for, relaxed, energized, enthusiastic about their work, anything you are looking for depending on the use. All the while yes, my passion isn’t with Architecture, becoming an Architect Technologist (or training as one) has allowed me to not only work better with other professionals I come across in my field but has given me a better understanding of how they work which in turn, only enriches my abilities to do what I aim for.


I love the variety of things I can go into. Never in a million years would I have been able to imagine the different areas I could go into. Not only within Residential, have Hospitality, Commercial and Retail areas but also into different disciplines such as textile designed, furniture design and graphics. It is a doorway to a whole new world of design that I knew nothing about when I started.


I can’t conclusively say what inspired me to go into Interior Architecture since growing up, I never had that one thing I wanted to do. I went from doctor to veterinarian, dentist to pilot and a few others I’m sure I’ve forgotten. Though art was always a consistent nagging nearby that wanted my attention. By the time I entered secondary, it was front and center. From there with the guidance of my art teacher, I tapered down the fields to things I found enjoyable and from there my aspirations were born.


Biggest challenge I’ve faced to date, I’d have to say is unfortunately coming back home. I’ve been met with professionals who try to down grade my career simply because Interior Architecture isn’t well known here. Though it is hopeful with Limkokwing University producing graduates of Interior Architecture things will change. We just haven’t caught up to the first world in some areas, it sucks but progress only happens so fast.


Regardless of some of the negative aspects I’ve been faced with, I’ve been able to obtain a job with an Architectural firm that I believe couldn’t have been a better placement for me. I expect to learn and grow exponentially while I work there.

My advice to anyone to wants to go into a creative field, (and yes Interior Architecture is a part of the creative field) is to simply jump. Go for it. The world is ready and waiting, while here in Botswana we may not have the broadest art related support system, it is growing, slowing; that is all we can ask for, the expansion and inclusion of creative and art related fields. Because if you don’t, you’ll end up with a pretty bland and inexpressive area, community etc…


I plan on diversifying my portfolio with other disciplines of design. Which ones have yet to be decided, it could be all, or just three more; only time will reveal where I land next. It’s all still up in the air currently.


If you wait for the world to tell you it’s time, you’ll always be joining the crowd and your mark will never be visible through the masses. Take the plunge; you’ll never know where you’ll end up.


Photo Credit: IG @FifyLoewen

https://fifyloewen.com


Naomi Loabile.

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