A conversation with Shiam Shibl Interior Designer at DLR Group
How long have you been working in the industry and what sectors (if any) do you specialize in?
I have been working in the design industry for 5 years, and I specialize mainly in residential towers and hospitality, with mixed-use experience.
What are some of your key achievements from the past year? (both personal and professional)
Working in an international company with a growing Dubai office, I witnessed professional growth as I have been entrusted with more responsibilities, improved my management skills and developed efficient work plans. My key achievement this year is getting recognition for my work by being shortlisted for two awards. I have also been involved in projects that have won awards and have been shortlisted in the industry, as well as being part of the team that had won Interior Design Firm of the Year last year, in the Design Middle East Awards. Regarding my personal achievements, I have dedicated a lot of my time before and after work to volleyball training, which not only helped my personal goals of improving my skills in the sport, but it also continues to strengthen my teamwork qualities, goal-oriented mindset, and team building. I also participate in tournaments, and it has helped me with stepping out of my comfort zone and with building my character. I take these lessons with me not only in sports, but in my career and my lifestyle.
What are some of the key learnings you received being part of the industry that you did not know before you joined?
Since I’ve joined the industry, I’ve realized the complexity of coordinating with other disciplines just to complete a project. It requires a lot of organized and efficient work planning to ensure a project could go smoothly. Another thing I have learned throughout my years in the design industry, is that your source of inspiration constantly changes, and we always need to be up to date with the latest trends, world events, how the behaviour of society is constantly changing; keeping in mind that all these factors affect our design and the end-user experience.
Any specific projects (completed) you would have liked to have been part of?
The iconic La Sagrada Familia has always struck me with intrigue and curiosity. I travelled to Barcelona twice just to visit this breath-taking building. “How was this even possible?” was the thought that played over and over in my head throughout my visit, and to be part of this project, not only would I have known how it was possible, but also to have lived with myself knowing I’ve helped in creating a masterpiece that history will never erase.
Who do you consider as a mentor in your career space?
Without a doubt I consider Vaida Buchrotaite as a mentor whom I look up to and have learned a lot from. Vaida is the Design Director in DLR Group, and I have never met anyone as strong, passionate, and dedicated as she is. She truly inspired me and helped me grow over the past two years and a half while working with her. She taught me how to be braver and to always believe in myself. I wouldn’t be the designer I am today if I hadn’t crossed paths with Vaida.
What branches of design would you like to explore next?
The branches of design I would like to explore are endless! But I will start off by saying that I would love to further explore designing places of worship, to create an experience where the end-users feel at peace and harmony within themselves, while still connecting to the beauty that can be achieved through design.
In two lines, what’s your take on the current design industry?
he designs industry today is truly fascinating, to see how far we’ve come with executing the unthinkable, and to see how the development of artificial intelligence has influenced the process of design. With the advancement of technology and to see so many designers continue to push boundaries and shape people’s way of viewing design, the industry continues to inspire designers to step out of their comfort zones and expect the unpredictable.