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Joe Snell

Joe
Snell

architect

Toast has been fortunate to work directly with Joe Snell on the design and fit-out of our new studio space. Recognised as one of Australia’s leading architects, his work spans architecture, interior design, urban events, retail and beyond with an underlying flair for creativity.

  • Feature image of Joe Snell
  • Feature image of Joe Snell
  • Feature image of Joe Snell
  • Feature image of Joe Snell
  • Feature image of Joe Snell

14-05-2015

On the wall

Visual insights with Joe Snell

Question number 1 Favourite pair of shoes...
Question number 2 View from your window...
Question number 3 Something you can’t live without...
Question number 4 Most loved object in your house...
Question number 5 Something that inspires you...
Question number 6 A selfie for the wall...
Question number 7 What represent's your work at present...
Question number 8 Favourite food this week...
Question number 9 Texture, colour or both...
Question number 10 Screensaver on your phone...
The long story

01.When did you realise you were creative?

I was 19 and didn’t know that I could be creative – then in first year uni one of the tasks was to create a light using really basic materials and a tea candle. I created a flower out of wire and cellophane and buried it deep within an existing long-leaved bush. It was surprisingly beautiful, it won the night, the lecturers said it was ‘sensitive’ and I couldn’t believe I had done it. I really had no idea I could do such a thing, or that I was capable of being ‘sensitive’. Haven’t looked back since.

02.What do you currently do for work?

I am an architect with Snell Architects, Creative Director with LLIGHT a lighting consultancy, Creative Director at The Goods Tube a bespoke corporate gifting service and a Judge on Channel Seven’s House Rules which is currently filming its third and fourth season’s.

03.Have you always worked in this field?

My father is an architect and after 7 years of studying architecture I decided I needed to see how everyone else saw property and the home, so I got a diploma in Real Estate and went to London and was an estate agent for two years selling and listing property. It was a fantastic experience and taught me how to look at the world through non-architect eyes. But it also taught me that I wanted to be an architect and that my passion was in design and creativity.

04.What inspires you the most at present?

Three things. The cross pollination of ideas with the different roles I am bringing together is so inspiring. Also the communication of the value and importance of design to millions of people through House rules is uplifting. And finally my 3 boys, ages 6,4 and 6 months, they are a joy, and bring constant surprise.

05.Your favourite project to date?

Toast Creative of course! It is great to work with fellow designers as they push you further and you create something different and exciting. All my projects are exciting – I am lucky in that way and I don’t think I could do it if I didn’t feel like there was something inspiring to explore.

06.Talk us through an average work day?

Every day is different. It could be in front of the computer all day, a day of meetings, a day of flying and filming. I certainly don’t do 9-5, and my office and home is in the same building. So I live where I work, and I work where I live. I see no separation, and I don’t feel I need to separate. Work and creativity is part of my lifestyle. Importantly I try and make sure there is good quality family time in my day. And sometimes I really need a holiday away from the office/home.

07.Who are your biggest style influences?

I don’t think about style, I more think about attitude – that is what inspires me – give me an attitude and then you will see style. David Bowie had attitude and he produced style. Style is about confidence and representing yourself in an independent way. Henry Holland has attitude and he has style. Bjarke Ingels has attitude, as does Olafur Eliasson, as does Bjork. I suppose all these people have an attitude that influences me.

08.Your idea of a dream project?

Well I would love to do a project that communicates the importance of design to the general population – how good design can change not only an individual’s life but also benefit society – just not sure what that is yet – but it is coming.

Also many ask me what I would do for myself – and I haven’t had the opportunity to do that yet – but hopefully it is not too far away.

09.The biggest challenge in your career?

The GFC hit at a hard time – it was still early in my career and the market definitely went flat – but in hindsight it was good because it made me focus on the real value that I could bring – which is creativity, and it also taught me to diversify in the types of projects I took on, which now really inform each other and take them further than they otherwise would.

10.What are you looking forward to?

A holiday! But that will have to be next year.

The long story

01.When did you realise you were creative?

I was 19 and didn’t know that I could be creative – then in first year uni one of the tasks was to create a light using really basic materials and a tea candle. I created a flower out of wire and cellophane and buried it deep within an existing long-leaved bush. It was surprisingly beautiful, it won the night, the lecturers said it was ‘sensitive’ and I couldn’t believe I had done it. I really had no idea I could do such a thing, or that I was capable of being ‘sensitive’. Haven’t looked back since.

02.What do you currently do for work?

I am an architect with Snell Architects, Creative Director with LLIGHT a lighting consultancy, Creative Director at The Goods Tube a bespoke corporate gifting service and a Judge on Channel Seven’s House Rules which is currently filming its third and fourth season’s.

03.Have you always worked in this field?

My father is an architect and after 7 years of studying architecture I decided I needed to see how everyone else saw property and the home, so I got a diploma in Real Estate and went to London and was an estate agent for two years selling and listing property. It was a fantastic experience and taught me how to look at the world through non-architect eyes. But it also taught me that I wanted to be an architect and that my passion was in design and creativity.

04.What inspires you the most at present?

Three things. The cross pollination of ideas with the different roles I am bringing together is so inspiring. Also the communication of the value and importance of design to millions of people through House rules is uplifting. And finally my 3 boys, ages 6,4 and 6 months, they are a joy, and bring constant surprise.

05.Your favourite project to date?

Toast Creative of course! It is great to work with fellow designers as they push you further and you create something different and exciting. All my projects are exciting – I am lucky in that way and I don’t think I could do it if I didn’t feel like there was something inspiring to explore.

06.Talk us through an average work day?

Every day is different. It could be in front of the computer all day, a day of meetings, a day of flying and filming. I certainly don’t do 9-5, and my office and home is in the same building. So I live where I work, and I work where I live. I see no separation, and I don’t feel I need to separate. Work and creativity is part of my lifestyle. Importantly I try and make sure there is good quality family time in my day. And sometimes I really need a holiday away from the office/home.

07.Who are your biggest style influences?

I don’t think about style, I more think about attitude – that is what inspires me – give me an attitude and then you will see style. David Bowie had attitude and he produced style. Style is about confidence and representing yourself in an independent way. Henry Holland has attitude and he has style. Bjarke Ingels has attitude, as does Olafur Eliasson, as does Bjork. I suppose all these people have an attitude that influences me.

08.Your idea of a dream project?

Well I would love to do a project that communicates the importance of design to the general population – how good design can change not only an individual’s life but also benefit society – just not sure what that is yet – but it is coming.

Also many ask me what I would do for myself – and I haven’t had the opportunity to do that yet – but hopefully it is not too far away.

09.The biggest challenge in your career?

The GFC hit at a hard time – it was still early in my career and the market definitely went flat – but in hindsight it was good because it made me focus on the real value that I could bring – which is creativity, and it also taught me to diversify in the types of projects I took on, which now really inform each other and take them further than they otherwise would.

10.What are you looking forward to?

A holiday! But that will have to be next year.

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