Updated: Oct 24, 2018
Architecture is considered to be one of the most noble profession amongst the Indian society. It is the science of buildings and not many people are capable enough to have mastered this art. Not only does this profession require a lot of hard work but also a lot of sincerity and patience. As students you have to deal with criticism of your faculties and as architects you have to deal with the criticism of the general public. The practice not only demand the students to be just sensible designers but also an up-to date professional who needs to be aware of what’s in the trend.
The designs produced by an architect need not just be sensitive towards the public or the users but also needs to affect the user psychology positively. However, even after putting in so much efforts it might not always be true that the design produced caters to the demands of the faculties or your seniors and on a bigger front, the public. Architecture is not easy. Not in terms of dedication and also not in terms of the time you have to put in. It is not just the studies that you have to take care of but also you have to meet the attendance requirement of your college or office. This is next to impossible, especially as students. In college either you could have the attendance, or you could have a life! That’s truly how it works. On some days you have to burn the midnight oil and you also have to attend the class the very next day with your mind absolutely numb and eye bags hanging down your cheeks.
Insufficient sleep does not actually make a great combination with the terrible food of the college mess and by the time you reach the higher years in the course, almost everything stops effecting you. Your parents are always complaining about how you have just become too pre-occupied with your life and have no time for family gatherings where you have judging family members always asking about your future plans when you yourself don’t know what they are. Whether you would pursue masters ahead or have had your own firm set up. It is really too exhausting to think about all that with the kind of work pressure you have to deal with.
But the only place where you find some solace is in the hostel when you find out that almost everyone is in the same boat as you. You discuss life on late nights staring at the stars on the terrace and you find out that everybody is equally confused about this. Nobody actually knows where their life is heading.
There are only a few students that actually find genuinely helpful seniors. One thing that every student must understand and realize is that your seniors are always your support system but sometimes they too get on your nerves when you yourself are cranky for not being able to execute your ideas and they are yelling on top of their voice about what garbage you have actually produced. Sometimes they even threaten to abandon you so it really depends on how you have to make it up to them! After all they hold a position that even the faculties can’t own. They are the only ones who could help you actually bridge the gap between producing a reasonable design and a great design. These are the people who can make your journey a little less painful, just in case you actually have some pain to feel.
You truly become numb after having your saturation level reached, especially during the time of final submissions where in you work your minds off and your room is looking like complete hell with sheets everywhere, topo glass all set with a bulb, colors and markers all over the place. Your place starts looking like a battle field where in you are trying your level best to just make your folios reach your faculty’s table before the deadline. It’s a sight that haunts you for days and it takes you another three days to have your room settled again because in the initial two days you just sleep in that mess.
You really don’t care about it, all you need is sleep and Netflix just in case you have to wake up for food and yourself entertained at that time. Exploiting the college WI-Fi to your best and watch your favourite TV shows. I mean F.R.I.E.N.D.S can actually save lives here.
As you spend a little more time in the colleges, let us say three years or maybe even less, your terminologies and dictionary completely changes. Now you just find yourself hanging around with your partner and instead of focusing on them, you are admiring the beauty of the building you are in! Architecture is a life transforming experience and just in case you are an over-ambitious and a highly career-oriented student, your life in architecture would involve so many times where in you find yourself in the middle of the night and in a conversation with yourself asking yourself to pause.
You do really need to remind yourself too chill and breathe and your thoughts turn monstrous enough making you think that you might actually run out of passion for this course. With your head in the academics and your hands in the internships, phew! You really sometimes feel the need to meditate and think clearly about what your priorities are and just in case you make it up to the year where you have to write your thesis, without having yourself detained because of structures (one of the subjects where you pray you never flung), you literally find yourself not having a topic to do thesis in.
Thesis is the showcase of all the things that you have learnt in the past few years of your college. It is the test of your knowledge and your perseverance and just in case you do swim across this too, you still can’t stay at peace unless you find a good firm for yourself for which you still have a folio pending to prepare. You prepare your folio and apply in almost all the firms you have ever know and then anticipate a positive response from the firm where you actually wanna be in.
Your struggles as architecture students as well as professionals are real. However, when you actually find yourself in a relatively stable position, you do realize that whatever you have gained out of this course was worth it. You realize that in your seniors you actually have found families and those late-night rooftop hostel conversations has helped you have friends for a lifetime. Your faculties having you meet the deadlines has made you deliver work to your clients right on time and your seniors constantly reminding you about how terrible your work is has actually helped you see your work from a different perspective.
Archi-torture or Architecture are merely feelings that one has during the course and after it.