Neha Mody: Leaving Ever-Lasting Impressions with Studio Design Atelier Pvt Ltd

Neha Mody
Neha Mody

As a multidisciplinary subject of art and craft, architecture demands many significant traits from the Architect, aside from creativity and imagination. Artistic expression requires passion, devotion, commitment, and a positively dreaming attitude. Craftiest endeavour necessitates patience, perseverance, and professional ability to adapt seamlessly to changing circumstances and dynamic times. One can learn the craft through constant pursuit. Only innately exceptional, artistically talented minds can maintain perpetual zeal. A fervour forever to keep following dreams amidst insurmountable adversities.  

All these characteristics are essential in looking at the Architectural profession with a holistic 360-degree view and grasping the invisible distinction between the integrated interplay. Possessing these qualities in abundance, Neha Mody, a gifted Architectfounded her architectural practice in 1999, Studio Design Atelier Pvt Ltd, which goes by the moniker “SDA,” to provide an interdisciplinary approach to design.   

Crafting a Sustainable Environment of Innovations

She established Studio Design Atelier with the assistance of Prashant Modi, a structural engineer, after years of experience working for prominent architects, including BV Doshi, KB Jain, and Leo Perrera.

The firm, which focuses on architecture, interior design, and urban planning, has a reputation for providing its clients with creative and sustainable solutions.

Initially, small-scale residential projects were the firm’s main focus, and commercial and institutional projects came later. Despite the sector’s difficulties in the early 2000s, SDA kept expanding and built up a solid clientele.

The company relocated to a bigger office in 2005 to accommodate its expanding staff and growing workload. With the change, the company was able to take on more challenging projects, such as many high-rise structures and urban regeneration initiatives.

SDA kept growing during the following ten years, building branch offices in numerous cities and extending its reach to other nations. The praise and honours cemented the company’s standing as a pioneer in the architecture sector it was receiving for its efforts.

With over 20 employees working on projects worldwide, SDA is one of India’s biggest and most reputable architectural businesses. The company continues to push the limits of design and have a significant impact on the built environment because of its dedication to sustainability, innovation, and cooperation.

Artistic Expression of Visual Inspirations

Sharing her inspirations behind venturing into the architectural arena, Neha says she has always been drawn to the imaginative and creative aspects of building and design as a woman. She is passionate about designing environments that are both useful and visually pleasing so that they may satisfy people’s needs while also evoking feelings and leaving a lasting impact. She has further been intrigued by how spaces can be altered to suit the requirements of various people and cultures.

Additionally, she thinks that design and architecture influence people’s lives and the environment. She says, “I believe there is much promise in this profession, whether through the design of spaces that encourage comfort and well-being or the construction of sustainable and environmentally friendly buildings.” Additionally, she is driven to create original solutions to challenging design issues and has the chance to continually advance her professional development.

In addition, she says it’s critical for women to be represented and active in the architecture and design industries. Women can significantly improve the sector since they bring a distinctive viewpoint and set of abilities to the table. Neha considers her entry into this industry a chance to change the world and encourage other women to work in architecture and design.

Exploring the Architectonics’ Possibilities 

Furthermore, her decision to pursue a career in architecture and design was motivated by her love of creating beautiful and useful spaces, the chance to make a positive difference in people’s lives, and the desire to push herself and motivate other women. “Exploring the countless chances and possibilities in this industry excites me, and I am eager to leave a lasting impression,” she marks. 

As a woman starting a career in the field of architecture and design, there are several challenges that Neha faced. Some of the challenges include the following:

~Lack of representation and gender bias: Despite recent advancements, the fields of architecture and design are still dominated by men. It can be challenging for women to be taken seriously and to succeed in their jobs due to gender bias that is frequently present and a lack of representation for women in leadership roles and the workplace.

~Work-life balance: Design and architecture are tough professions demanding long hours and dedication. A healthy work-life balance can be difficult for women because many are juggling caregiving responsibilities.

~A lack of mentoring: Mentorship can be crucial to an architect’s or designer’s success. Unfortunately, finding female mentors in their area can be challenging for women, which might limit their exposure to other methods and viewpoints.

~Financial difficulties: Starting a new business can be expensive in any sector, and the architecture and design industries are no different. Women may have challenges getting loans for their enterprises or funding their initiatives.

~Technical proficiency: As highly technical professions, architecture and design require in-depth knowledge of construction procedures, building codes, and software. Obtaining the technical expertise and skills needed to succeed in the workplace may be difficult for women.

Despite these difficulties, she overcame them and forged a successful practice in architecture and design. She furthers, “I aim to have a good impact on the industry and set the way for future generations of female architects by becoming a strong mentor, building strong networks, and overcoming challenges.”

Design Dynamics 

When probed about what professional values and qualities she thinks her clients value in her and SDA the most, she says they are 

*Attention to detail: Neha is renowned for her attention to detail, which is essential in designing useful and visually beautiful environments. The clients value the effort and attention put into the design process and the final product. 

*Strong communication skills: In each design project, clear and concise communication is essential, so people highly value Neha’s communication abilities. This ensures that customers are informed and that their requirements and desires are considered.

*Creativity and innovation: She can develop inventive solutions to design issues because of her distinct perspective and skill set. Clients appreciate her ability to think creatively and generate original concepts that satisfy their demands. 

*Personalization and customization: Her business acumen is known for developing unique, individualized solutions for clients. Customers value the effort to fully comprehend their requirements and create environments specifically catering to their demands.

She adds, “I’m also well-known for my capacity for empathy and my ability to comprehend the needs of others.” This translates into an emphasis on the client’s requirements and a desire to design environments that are practical, warm, and accessible in an architectural practice. 

*Sustainability and environmental friendliness: SDA is dedicated to developing environmentally friendly spaces. Clients appreciate the dedication to minimizing the environmental effect of buildings and creating environments that support well-being and health.

Clients generally like the customized approach, excellent communication, and emphasis on sustainability and innovation. These characteristics aid in encouraging a collaborative design process and provide places tailored to each client’s individual requirements.

Unifying Sensible Perspectives

Sharing brand SDAs USPs, Neha says she and her team take great pride in having a multidisciplinary firm where the client needs to employ them. “We offer a comprehensive design solution. We strive to give the client the complete package, from the initial concept to the final execution,” she says.  

She informs that their areas of expertise include interior design, furniture design, pharmaceutical factory and industrial design, hospitality and hospital design, sustainable design, and accessibility design. In medical, industrial, and hotel design, which calls for strict norms and practice in a highly particular format and where the design also affects a person’s health and wellness, they have unquestionably attained expertise.

Incorporating biophilic design aspects, using sustainable materials, and incorporating psychology into design solutions are all made possible by our distinctive design philosophy and methodology,” she states.  

She and her team SDA like to emphasise client cooperation and communication, dedication to integrating clients in the design process, and ensuring clear and consistent communication throughout the project. 

They stay up to date to employ cutting-edge tools like virtual and augmented reality to improve the design process and provide clients with a more engaging experience.

In the modern world, they take pleasure in their dedication to sustainability and eco-friendliness, emphasizing lowering buildings’ environmental footprints and adopting sustainable design principles. 

Over the past 20 years, SDA has built a solid reputation and portfolio, showcasing a history of providing top-notch creative solutions and happy customers.

Advising Architectural Aspirants

As an experienced professional, her advice to budding aspirants who are willing to enter the business world is extensive. She says she would like them to consider the following:

Build a firm foundation: Design, engineering, and building concepts should form the basis of your knowledge. Invest heavily in your education and look for professional development possibilities. 

The world of architecture and design is constantly evolving. Therefore it’s critical to be educated about new tools, resources, and fashions in the sector. To keep current on the industry, go to conferences, workshops, and events. Learn about breakthroughs and products. And aim to become an expert in software and technology.

Develop a broad range of skills since design and architecture draw from many other fields, and having a wide range of skills would be very beneficial. Consider pursuing possibilities to obtain expertise in several fields, such as landscape design, interior design, furniture design, parametric architecture, computational design, etc., and investigate other areas of interest. 

Build a strong network of industry leaders and look for mentoring. These two steps help grow your career. Find a mentor who can advise you and navigate the difficulties in our industry.

Tend to strive: Working in the architectural and design industry may be difficult, but it’s also quite rewarding. Accept adversities as chances to develop and learn, and be receptive to fresh insights and experiences. 

Embrace a strong work ethic: Even though projects in architecture and design frequently include long hours and hard labour, it’s crucial to keep a strong work ethic and commitment to your trade. Be persistent and diligent in your search for chances to hone your abilities. 

Being a woman in a historically male-dominated sector requires you to be aggressive and confident in your job and communication. Never be ashamed to stand up for yourself and your work.

Overall, architecture and design offer endless opportunities for growth and creativity, and with hard work and dedication, anyone can succeed in this rewarding field. 

Welcoming You to a Tech-Transformed Future

On envisioning SDA’s operations with the emerging technologies and automated tools that are revolutionizing the business world by enabling innovations, Neha reveals that the architectural and design industry is shifting as new technologies become available, opening up new possibilities for creativity and efficiency. Architecture and design practices may benefit greatly from adopting new technologies like AI, BIM, virtual reality, and augmented reality. Some of these advantages include the following: 

*Streamlined design and construction processes: “We are moving toward BIM and other digital technologies that can help us, as architects and designers, collaborate more successfully on complicated projects, lowering the risk of errors and increasing productivity.”

*Enhanced sustainability: Their architectural and design firm can ensure their projects are more environmentally conscious and sustainable by embracing green building design concepts and leveraging technologies like material analysis and sustainable procurement of their products. 

*Improved client communication: By utilizing VR and AR, they have begun to provide customers with a more immersive and engaging experience, assisting them in better understanding and visualizing the designs. 

*Enhanced efficiency and accuracy: “By utilizing AI and other automated techniques, we are improving our ability to estimate project costs and schedules, lowering the chance of mistakes, and ensuring that projects stay on schedule.”

*Better data management: By using BIM, they can manage and store enormous volumes of project data, which makes it simpler to track changes, work with stakeholders, and rapidly access vital information. 

*MidJouney and AI: “We have begun to employ AI technologies, such as ChatGPT and MidJouney, to create thoughts and creative solutions that the human brain is still unable to realize. It enables us to add a dimension to the design that conventional practices still attempt to comprehend. We especially combine technology and design in our practice,” says Neha.

Architecture and design firms may remain ahead of the competition, provide customers with better design solutions, and ensure their operations are more effective and sustainable by embracing these cutting-edge technologies.

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