Today we’d like to introduce you to Tim Campbell.
Tim, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started drawing houses when I was five, drawing was essentially my first language.
When I moved to LA in the early 80’s, I got a job as the design assistant to the head of the design department for Hilton Hotels. That eventually led to my starting a company which provided out-source drafting work for architects and designers using CAD software which was new at the time. Through that company, I met and mentored with some great architects and that eventually led to my opening my own design firm, Studio Tim Campbell.
While I’m not a licensed architect our practice is the design of custom single-family homes and along the way, the restoration of some pretty significantly important architectural masterpieces originally designed by Richard Neutra, Rex Lotery, Ralph Flewelling, Luis Barragan, among others. Historic restoration has become a passion and a major focus of my work.
LA is a storied city and hidden behind her many neglige’s of hedges are some of the worlds most spectacular homes. Its never lost on me that a kid from the Midwest could find himself in this amazing City of Angels, designing homes were the limit of dreams stretches well beyond the perceivable horizon and where beauty is for all reasonable purposes, our religion.
Has it been a smooth road?
I’m not a guy who likes a smooth road. Bumps build character and resilience, so I view the setbacks as opportunities. I’d say my biggest challenge has been the fact that I’m self-trained and don’t come to the table with the same credentials as a lot of my contemporaries.
For me, that is actually a plus- my career, as a result, has not been burdened by the inherent prejudices that a formal education instills and I’ve as a result been an underdog and have always been willing to work harder and longer than my competition.
The end result is that my perspective has been shaped by hard-won battles to get where I am, and I’ve never rested on my laurels. I still feel like I have to prove myself on every project I take on and I’m never satisfied with what I’ve accomplished to date.
As an example, I published my first book last year titled Intentional Beauty, and as soon as the launch was done, I was already thinking about the next book.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
My business is designing luxury homes in Los Angeles and New York. While it’s not the only work I do I’ve ended up by fate I guess, specializing in the restoration of mostly mid-century and modern masterpieces built by some of LA’s most well-known architects.
I’m most proud of each of the houses I’ve restored. There are only a few of us who’ve had the blessing to work on as many as I have and I consider it an honor to be invited into the sacred dwellings and move softly and gently to nudge them back to life for another hundred years.
I think what sets my firm apart from others is that we are truly a boutique operation- if you hire us- I’m on your project. While I have a team that supports my work, my hand is in every detail at every turn.
Its a very personal approach but we are in most cases working on one of the most important endeavors our clients will ever take on- their own home. Our job is mostly to be good stewards and to provide them with the best version of their life that we can.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
I think LA is one of the best cities in the world. I’ve said it for years- we are just about to be discovered… I think we finally have insomuch as when I travel (I’m in Europe and Africa several times a year) the one thing people want to know about is LA. She is a grand old dame with a beautiful young soul where anyone can be anything. Were I to advise someone starting out here in my business I’d say don’t be afraid to work hard and get your hands dirty.
I’m a bit old school and not so much a fan of the cult of personality that design in many ways has become- so show me your work- not what you had for dinner or who you were hanging out within Capri… if you want to impress me, show me your skills. I’d say humility and hard work are two of the most cherished qualities of character and if you have those down, work hard, learn your craft however you can, and do good work, this city will love you like no other.
- Website: www.studiotimcampbell.com
- Phone: 213-688-1440
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: studiotimcampbell
- Facebook: studiotimcampbell
Karen Millet, Bill Jacobson