JoMa Architecture & Design
Tell us about what you do...
I'm an architect – I design low energy and low impact buildings throughout the UK.
What is your approach to sustainable architecture?
I forget about the technologies to start with and get the basics right – natural materials, lots of insulation, good natural daylight and healthy spaces.
Tell us about your background...
I studied a lot, mainly in Wales. I worked for other architect practices but then got frustrated with the industry's lack of respect for the environment, so I set up my own practice to try and do things differently. It's hard work but I love it. Everyday is a school day.
What inspires you?
Each project takes inspiration from different things. I avoid the one size fits all approach so each of my projects is a bespoke creation that responds to its location and the people who are going to enjoy it. I take inspiration from some great designers, such as Frank Lloyd Wright who coined the term 'Organic Architecture' and a less well-known chap called Hugo Haring.
What sort of projects are you excited about working on?
It's not really the projects, it's the people. I love developing relationships with interesting people. I'm currently working on a new build house in Cambridgeshire for an amazing couple who want to downsize to a modern home, while reducing their energy bills. We just won planning approval on appeal because the couple not only had faith in me but also in their ideals for low energy eco home. Many of my current projects are one-off houses or large extensions. I would love to challenge myself with larger projects but I don't see myself designing the next Gherkin or Sydney Opera house for a while.