Design without concept
Singapore, 11th July 2014
It happens at times that the project owners are in a hurry don’t really have a properly conceived idea what they want except it has to be quick and cheap. What’s new you are going to say, but in our business that is not all that easy to administer, specifically if you have a fee proposal that is based on specific stages from concept to documentation and from contract award to completion of the whole installation. When these steps are not fully cleared you have the potential of a very messy project where the clients administration does not really know how to deal with your invoices. The appointment fee is generally a no-brainer, you get appointed you receive your starter or mobilisation fees. But once you invoice for schematic and or concept it becomes harder if you have practically moved straight to documentation as there is not much to conceptualise.
We are in a situation like that at the moment with 2 of our projects, where there is really no need for a real concept. One of the project is a renovation the other is a new project (but taken over by a new client) in which we were brought in to look after the lighting after the basic design was already done by previous consultants. Hence our role is review and recommend in this one. In the other, which is more landscape related there are no site plans and there is basically not a big budget to do a lot. The lighting is existing but 20 years old or thereabouts. The only way we can go about it really is to use site pictures and advise how to improve or replace the current lighting for better results. In both cases not much of a concept or you would have to take our strategic approach to these projects that does describe in general line how we intent to attack the lighting issues as being the concept. Perhaps you can say our contract is not properly suited to this but honestly when we started these projects these details were not really spelled out.
Anyhow we are managing that with our experience and in a way you can say that the concept is already build into our actions and recommendation exactly because of our experience on how to resolve it. But it shows that you need to be skilled in not just lighting design as at the same time we are running a business in which cash flow is critical, so understanding the finer details of contract administration as part of designing is really important. 🙂
Light watch 5-114: There are always people with inspirational and creative lighting concepts. This one was produced by Croatian lighting design studio Skira who projected colourful lighting on to these giant shipyard cranes in the city of Pula and position and made to look like the famous origami paper cranes. Have a great weekend!