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Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Architecture / (Architecture)

THINKING ARCHITECTURE (ARC2312 / ARC2323 / ARC60603)

Submission 2: Personal Values Statement: Defining Personal Values for Design


Student Name: Sharifah Diyana binti Syed Hussain
Student ID: 1006AH78373

Date: 20/10/2014

Instructor: Tony Liew

Each and every one of us is unique in our own way. We have our own set of characteristics and
personality that defines who we are and who we want to be. Our background, experiences and abilities
makes up our personal values. This is important to future architects as personal values helps create a
worldview for the individual. We tend to design not only from a specific purpose, but through our own
values and attitudes as well. It helps to enhance and give a deeper story to the design itself.
One of our purposes in life is our worldview. It is how we look at the world and what we think of it. It
correlates with our own personal values. Our behaviours, actions and motivations should be consistent with
our worldview. An example of a worldview could be secular humanism, which values human life and
encourages people to help each other. As an architect, this basically means designing for the people.
Everything we design and create helps to improve the society.
A personal value statement clarifies and gives a sense of purpose to an individual. It defines who
you are and how you live. By understanding our own values better, we get to improve as designers. This is
because our personal values play a big role in how we design. Relationships with family, inspiration from
others and important events that occurred in our life helps to shape us as a person. All of these inspires us
and teaches us specific lessons that could be used in our design. It gives us different ways of approaching
a design.
As an architect or even future architects, having a personal value statement is important. By
exploring ourselves, we understand our traits better. For myself, a personal value statement allows me to
gain a new perspective of myself. I'm able to understand how my design ideas relate back to my character
and personality. Through this, I am able to enhance my skills as well and be better.
By taking the central six surveys, I was able to evaluate and question what my traits are and what
character I am as a person. I realized that I have always been an introvert. Shy, quiet, creative, simple,

nice, and humble are just a few of my characteristics. All of these relates back to my upbringing. My
parents brought me up in a very well-mannered way. We were always told to be polite and only speak
when we have nice things to say. I also grew up with knowing how to keep our private matter to ourselves,
and separating study life. This upbringing shaped me to be the person I am today. Our religion as well
guides me to be a better person. It teaches us to always be humble and nice to others. Although coming
from a well off family, we always try our best to not be arrogant with what we have, rather be thankful with
what we're given. It allowed me to be open and accept people as who they are even better, since we were
not taught to judge a person by where they come from but who they are as an individual. I was born on
10th March 1992 in Johor, but was raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. My early education was from
government schools for both primary and secondary. Later on, I enrolled in Taylor's College for A Level's
program to pursue medicine. After completing the program, I realized I was more interested in arts. This
then lead me to pursue architecture in Taylor's University. Growing up, I have always been more inclined
towards arts. My parents allowed and encouraged us to try out different things and explore our creativity.
I've taken art classes, as well as music classes, which helped me a lot in understanding and appreciating
art. Being able to travel around the world also gives me a different perspective in life. I enjoy learning about
different cultures, appreciating their architecture and people. I have travelled to cities such as New York,
London and Melbourne. Through all the trips I've made, I was lucky enough to explore the beauty of each
place.
Looking back at my personal values, it relates well with my worldview. I want to be able to design
architectural things for the people. Something simple, yet very useful. Being humble allows me to do so, by
designing spaces that are required while keeping the elaboration at a minimal. Through traveling and
learning different cultures, I am more open to how certain things are done. This allows me to adopt to
different scenarios and requirements of design.
One of my favourite architects is Shigeru Ban. I was fortunate enough to study him in my first year
of architecture. He is very famously known for his Paper Architecture and also for his humanitarian
activities. Most of his designs are very simple yet wonderful, due to his minimalist approach. He is called
the Paper Architect for his usage of recycled papers in his designs. He doesn't like the thought of wasting,
therefore he came up with the idea of using recycled papers and turning them into tubes for floors and
walls. He often involves himself with disaster related projects, being a humanitarian himself. He prefers
building for the people rather than for fame.

I have always designed my spaces and building with a minimal approach. After being exposed to
Shigeru Ban's work, my design approach changed a little. I refer to his projects to enhance and get a better
understanding on how minimal design should be. His usage of recycled materials sparked my interest and
encouraged me to do the same. As for now I include natural materials in most of my projects.
Architecturally, I am more interested in communication. I'm fascinated on how each space and
design communicates to the people. The experience that users get when they enter a specific area and all
the memories that is created through the building and relationship with the users. Just like Shigeru Ban, I
would love to create designs that are both minimal and wonderful. Being a people's person, I want to create
great spaces for others at a cheaper cost. This is to allow each of them to have an amazing experience
even without earning a lot. I want to be a designer for the people and cater for them.
Being in architecture, a personal statement value is important. It allows us to look into our
background, values and experience and how it relates to our architectural values. Each of our design
comes from our own individual personalities. This is why every building and space is different from one
another, as it is designed by different people. It gives us an overall understanding of who we are and how
we translate that into our design as an architect.