Exercise 5.1: Person-Space-Context

I am going to invent a ‘person’, ‘character’ or a ‘client’. I will write 3 short paragraphs about my newly invented character. The first paragraph will describe who they are ‘now’. The second paragraph will give a little history and backstory to your character and the third paragraph will describe any aims and ambitions my character has for the future.

I am female, aged 56, my name is Marrianne and I live with my husband in a village in the South West of England, in a smaller property than my last that I’m in the process of refurbishing. My work as a freelance journalist is demanding on my time and now that our 3 daughters have grown up and left home, my husband and I want to be able to enjoy a smaller property, where life away from the hustle and bustle of the city of London will give us the chance to relax when we have some downtime. I’m a very private person and we have a small circle of friends that we socialise with once a month.

Growing up as an only child whilst living in the countryside, I had a very sheltered life, many days were spent writing stories and making up imaginary friends. My career in Journalism wasn’t planned, originally I attended university to study History. During my time at uni I spent time with friends that were involved in local politics and so this led me down the path of Journalism, which has given me a great work life, I’ve been fortunate enough to have travelled around the world, my husband has been fantastic in sharing the load of taking care of the children and our home to enable me to live this life and in doing so I have written many pieces mainly on food and culture. My three daughters were born a few years apart, they have a very close relationship and they all live in close proximity of each other.

Downsizing our family home was a huge decision, but we are already seeing a difference in our free time, my husband and I spend a lot more time with each other as we don’t commute so much any more. In a few years I hope to retire and so once we have finished refurbishing our home we hope to travel together and on our travels collect ideas and treasures to fill our home with. I’m optimistic that the future will be less about working our fingers to the bone and more about sitting in the quiet spaces and listening to music, podcasts or reading those psychological thrillers I haven’t yet found time to read.

Reflection

On reflection of the last exercise, person-space-context, that really was enjoyable. I did feel a little silly at first putting words on the paper but I didn’t struggle to create a fictional character. I have met some many people over my working career and so I didn’t find this character too difficult to imagine. In actual fact, it feels as though I really do know this fictional person! In my current role as a decorator I meet so many different people and work in lots of different homes and commercial properties and so in practise I’m realising that the more you know about your client, the more enjoyable the journey will be in helping design a space they are asking for. Excited for the next part of this exercise!

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