From Director to Designer: Q+A With HOK’s Sybille Herwig
Sybille Herwig talks about her experiences transitioning from life in the entertainment business to a career as an interior design professional in HOK’s Los Angeles office.
Excerpted from Voyage LA:
Thanks for sharing your story with us Sybille. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Born and raised in Germany as the daughter of an engineer and an artist, I established my passion for everything and anything creative at a very young age. I spent my childhood and youth performing and teaching dance, which eventually brought me to Spain where I worked as an artistic director in major hotel resorts.
Eventually, a bigger sense of adventure took me on extensive world travel aboard cruise ships as an excursion and entertainment manager. Sixty-five countries later, I moved to California to pursue my bachelor’s degree in communications and film. Dreaming big, I made the leap to Hollywood working in film and commercial production as a production coordinator, producer and occasional actor.
After more than a decade in the industry, I mastered the skill of creative problem solving, but realized that I was catering to other people’s ideas and my own creative urges were left unfulfilled. I was ready for another change and interior design became my new calling. I went back to grad school and received my master’s degree in interior architecture.
Now, I get to create and implement my own ideas through a beautiful and freeing collaborative process. I see my new future in creating modern, innovative and sustainable design solutions for international hospitality and commercial clients.
What should we know about HOK? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Being one of the creative minds at a top firm in the design industry has been a great start for my new career. I am working with an amazing team of designers and architects to create innovative spaces.
Our international team infuses each project with global expertise, which really resonates with me. Diversity breeds innovation and I am proud to say that my background in creative arts and world travel really gives me an edge in design.
Seeing our ideas evolve into tangible architecture for people to live and work generates an immense sense of satisfaction. We are truly contributing to the enhancement of the built environment. HOK also proudly supports the development of many non-profit projects in our local community.
My philosophy for both design and life, in general, is to always be brave and make a bold statement. I never want to have regrets about compromising my vision. It is usually right there, at the end, when we reach discovery and push through to some new territory and a new, unexpected idea might blossom.