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"My mom's insistence taught me to be a mindful user of our planet's resources," says designer Mark Einselen

Architectural Designer, Mark Einselen of Old Town Design Group shares 3 books that have influenced his life in architecture.
"My mom's insistence taught me to be a mindful user of our planet's resources," says designer Mark Einselen

by GoArchitect Staff

A year ago

Each week GoArchitect interviews one person about their life in architecture. Want to be considered for an interview? Please fill this out.

Mark Einselen

Architectural Designer, CAD Manager at Old Town Design Group

Mark Einselen is a 2011 graduate of Andrews University School of Architecture. He spends his days (and some nights) as an Architectural Designer for Old Town Design Group in Carmel, Indiana. Most of his time is spent meeting with clients, walking through construction projects and mud, developing new products (such as pre-designed plans and townhouses), and managing the CAD department. Occasionally he can be found riding his bike in downtown Indianapolis, hiking in creeks, napping in his hammock at home, or backpacking abroad. Someday he will tend a flock of chickens.

What 3 books have impacted your life in architecture and why?

Classic Houses of the Twenties


This book came to me as a Christmas present when I was young. The economy of the roaring twenties, popularity of the automobile, and "kit" homes (like those sold by Sears, Roebuck and Co.) helped detached single family residences explode at an unprecedented rate. Loizeaux's book showcases some of the most popular romantic revival home styles from the 1920's. It's influence on my sense of proportion, scale, and architectural character continues to this day.

30 Energy-Efficient Houses You Can Build

Alex Wade and Neal Ewenstein

My mother's architectural library is as eclectic as any. This obscure book from 1977 profiles 30 custom projects, each with a peculiar spin on sustainability. The architect embraced each clients' own practical construction skills, local geography, and materials. There are strong correlations between these projects and Auburn University's Rural Studio. This book, along with my mom's insistence, taught me to be a mindful user of our planet's resources.

The Death and Life of Great American Cities

Jane Jacobs

I was unfamiliar with this book until it was assigned in college. Now I recommend it to everyone who asks for a reading recommendation. It broadened my interests beyond the individual dwelling and to the whole urban context of a structure. Jane Jacobs also, discreetly, makes the compelling case that everyone who is affected by the built environment has a valid opinion. Because of Jane Jacobs, I tell my clients that their personal experience informs my work as a professional in the industry.

Have any of these books influenced your life or career in architecture? Leave a comment below and tell us how.

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