Claire McManus + Herlong Architects : Reflection


I finished my internship hours last week, so for my blog post this week, I just wanted to write a reflection on my time at Herlong Architects.

I was first drawn to Herlong when searching for residential firms in Charleston, as I knew that residential practice was the path I was leaning towards for my future career.  Because I lived with family on Sullivan’s Island, and they were located there, I knew it would be a great fit.  From the first day I walked in (to interview) last November, I have learned more about residential architecture than I could have imagined.  Everyone I have worked with over the past year has been nothing less than wonderful to me and for my first big experience in a firm setting.

I got to do a few site visits, learned so much about SketchUp, so much about office practice, the design review board, and about renderings.  I got to work alongside interior designers, which I ended up learning a good bit about, too.  I learned about client relationships, and what clients expect/need/want to see throughout a job process.

Even though I only worked in-office a few months, I also learned that architecture can be practiced virtually and still be successful.  All summer, I was afforded an internship with them, where due to the pandemic, I worked from home.  I was able to sit in on zoom calls, and complete models, while working on other things that came up along the way.  One interesting thing was how to locate a sun path.  Who knew architects needed to understand that, but it definitely makes sense now.  The clients wanted to be able to see the sunset from their porch, which determined the location of the house on the lot.  I was able to find the coordinates of the site, plug them in, and trace the sun throughout the different solstices to ensure they would get that view.

Above is an image of the office that I water-colored and had turned in to ornaments and notecards for my coworkers. I wanted to include it in this blog as a reflection of my time there.

I am so thankful for my experience at Herlong Architects, and I know that it definitely has helped shaped the architect I am becoming.


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