How does Hollywood’s “typecast” theory apply to design?

by WOHe

Actors don’t like to by typecast. The theory goes, if an actor successfully plays the same type of role in a few decent movies – good guy, bad guy, action hero – he’ll forever be pegged as that type of character actor and will never play a different type of role. For example, an actor who always is an action hero will never play the lead role in a romantic comedy.

Can the typecast theory be applied to architects, designers and builders? And if it can, is it a good or bad thing?

I think this is one of those situations in which the answer depends on who you’re talking to. A successful architect who built a 30-year career designing nothing but contemporary homes will tell you the greatest thing in his life was being typecast as a contemporary designer. The same is true for a successful custom builder who, for example, becomes known as “that Texas Hill Country builder.†Take a look at Laughlin Homes & Restoration. No one does Hill Country better.

However, what about the designer who prides herself on retiring after decades designing whatever her clients wanted, accurately, artfully and profitably? Is she revered within the architectural community, or not?

I believe the answer depends on an individual’s definition of success. What do you think?

Share your thoughts by sending me an e-mail. Or, scroll up to the first paragraph of this blog entry, look to the right and click where you see, “Leave a comment†or “Post or view comments.â€

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