Interior design is a multi-faceted profession in which creative and technical solutions are applied within a structure to achieve a built interior environment. These solutions are functional, enhance the quality of life and culture of the occupants, and are aesthetically attractive.
Many factors come into play in formulating the design solution. There is the space itself–its dimensions and construction–with its potential and its limitations. There is how the space will be used–for work or leisure, entertainment or worship, healing or learning. There is the meaning of the space, what it signifies–be it power, authority, security, wisdom, achievement, playfulness or serenity. There are practical considerations, like ease of access, amount of light, acoustics, seating and places to store or set things down. There are health and safety considerations, attention to special needs and more.
Many designers specialize in one or more of the following areas of commercial design.
Entertainment design brings together the use of interiors, lighting, sound and other technologies for movies, television, videos, dramatic and musical theater, clubs, concerts, theme parks and industrial projects.
A facilities manager develops schedules for building upkeep and maintenance, addressing safety and health issues and lighting and acoustics needs. A facilities manager also plans and coordinates office moves or expansions, and serves as project manager during construction or renovation.
A government designer is familiar with the very specific needs and requirements associated with working with government agencies, such as military bases, federal buildings or government offices. An institutional designer focuses on projects such as child care, educational, religious, correctional and recreational facilities, fire and police stations, courts, embassies, libraries, auditoriums, museums and transportation terminals.
Health care designers create environments for hospitals; clinics; examination rooms; surgical suites; mobile units; hospice care homes; nursing, assisted living or long term care facilities; or any other health care environment.
Hospitality design focuses on environments that entertain or host the public, including nightclubs, restaurants, theaters, hotels, city and country clubs, golf facilities, cruise ships and conference facilities.
Office design focuses on the public and private areas utilized by corporate and professional service firms.
Retail design and store planning concentrate on retail venues, including boutiques, department stores, outlets, showrooms, food retailing centers and shopping malls.