Davis Ink, Newport Beach, California
Recently completed projects Side Bar, Lucky D’s, both in San Diego; the Kress, Los Angeles
Projects on the boards Atrium Hotel, Irvine, California; Aubergine nightclub, San Diego
Hotel for design The Clift in San Francisco
I am intrigued by Primitive cultures and places that remain untouched by man. My favorite place to explore would be the jungles of New Guinea. Totally undiscovered plant species, insects, and animals. More diversity then anywhere else on earth
Product of the moment Art forms that reflect natural images (such as the big buffalo image we are using in the elevator of the atrium hotel), organic products: old wood planks, driftwood, sticks, moss etc.
City I am watching Shanghai, Beijing, and other fascinating cites that are developing out of formerly third world nations
Best part of the industry Seeing people enjoy the environments we create and how spaces we design can have a positive impact on people’s lives.
Most challenging part Getting people to open their minds and experiment with space. Convincing people to look at obstacles as opportunities for discovery. Teaching people to have fun with the design process as this always creates the most rewarding results
Movie I can always watch Pulp Fiction is my all time favorite. I discover new details every time I see it. I also enjoy trippy animated movies like Coraline and Nightmare before Christmas, which I can enjoy with my kids
Book on my nightstand Son of the Circus by John Irving. I love all Irving books as well as Charles Burkowski.
I’m listening to Old school punk rock like T.S.O.L., Vandals. I also like new alternative and dance music like Santigold, Shiny Toy Guns, and M.I.A.
I would like to design A tree house structure or a building under water. Something completely ‘off the wall’ that has a direct connection with nature
My perfect day is Surfing in the morning, playing with the kids, working in the garden, going out to a great dinner with my wife, and having two great glasses of wine (no more, no less). A great dinner consists of a local ‘hole in the wall’ restaurant like La Cave or Captain Jacks. It is these old local gems that provide so much visual inspiration.
Big break Being accepted to the Cal Poly Pomona Master’s Program in Architecture when I was a pretty wild and unsettled guy. The head of the architecture program Sigrid Pollin really believed in me and I was one of the few accepted.
You would never know I Bite my fingernails, and have ADD w/ an obsessive-compulsive twist—which is great for design.
Guilty Pleasure Really great wine and really cheap donuts
I can live without Planned communities that are often found in the OC—lots of different shades of beige and fines when your garage door is left open.
I own too many of Mid-century nick-knacks—ashtrays, vases, random coffee cups, and lots of lamps.
Trend that isn’t really a trend that I am paying attention to That’s my secret!
Lesson learned Love what you do in life, and do everything with an open mind—never doubt yourself.
Most important thing in your office View outside the window—looking out at all the people and cars on the busy street below.
Favorite city Paris
Architect/designer I would love to meet Architect: Schindler and Le Corbusier, would have liked to meet. Designer: Philippe Starck—he seems like a cool guy
When I am not at work, I am Surfing, playing with kids, collecting tropical plants and large lava rocks. Exploring thrift stores.
Mentor My wife, she keeps me calm and tells me when to stop, and she keeps my ADD/obsessive compulsive disorder of wanting everything perfect in check
Project photos: Side Bar; photography by Christopher Orsatti