Spiritual Transformation: Temple Akiba

Happy New Year!

2018 is going to be full of opportunities to maximize our potential and I am excited to see what the future holds!

The Temple Akiba, remodeled by HCLA Architecture, is a lovely gesture supporting this sentiment. Originally built and designed by Robert A Kennard in 1965, Temple Akiba was ready for a transformational new design.

HCLA enhanced the spiritual quality of this sacred space by adding light, dimension and color through nuanced fenestration, ceremonial outdoor spaces, and the use of simple and elegant materials. The result is a series of layered sacred spaces that convey a sense of peace.

I hope you enjoy viewing the images as much as I enjoyed creating them.

I wish the best for you in 2018!

5 Keys School on Wheels for Adults!!

Designed by Deanna Van Buren, co-founder of Designing Justice + Designing Spaces, this awesome mobile school for adults is the first of its kind in the nation. Five Keys Charter School plans to bring “The Self-Determination Project” directly into some of San Francisco’s most neglected communities to increase residents’ immediate access to programs and achieve their high school diploma. Donated by SF Muni and outfitted by google, the bus has been completely transformed into a state-of-the-art classroom.

I was honored to be part of this project!

Click here to view a touching video about this program and its impact.

Click here to read more about it.


Bishop O’Dowd – A Top Green School!

Awarded the U.S. Department of Education’s highest Green Ribbon designation in 2016, Bishop O’Dowd High School has a division strictly dedicated to sustainability. This division recommends and implements a wide range of programs to enable greater sustainability practices both on campus and in the community at large.

Part of its dedication to this directive was the creation of Bishop O’Dowd’s Environmental Studies Building. Designed by Siegel & Strain Architects and the Bishop O’Dowd sustainability team, this Zero Net Energy and Zero Net Water building was constructed in part with materials harvested from the site. The structure facilitates an hands-on environmental education program where the students learn about sustainability first hand.




BNIM – Landscape Architecture

Landscape architecture is a powerful component when integrating new structures within an existing campus. BNIM’s landscape architecture team did an incredible job on the Pacific Center Campus project in San Diego. Bridging the old with the new, they created pleasant, drought tolerant environments and pathways for the employees to enjoy throughout the day.



Adobe’s Renovated Headquarters – San Jose


Over the past year I have been working with Gensler documenting their extraordinary work renovating Adobe’s Headquarters. In this post you will see the FULL set of images capturing the 3 phases of this project.

The Adobe headquarters in San Jose, CA has been completely transformed. Designed by Gensler, Adobe’s goal is to instill a genuine desire for it’s employees to come to work and have daily unique experiences. The new design encourages cross pollination across all sectors and the freedom to work anywhere on site. Driven by the need to attract and retain new talent, one of Adobe’s top priorities was to keep up with the latest trends and attitudes towards design and space within the working environment.

I hope you enjoy viewing the images and please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about this project or any others posted on this Blog.

10-16_gensler_adobe_final-762-edit 10-16_gensler_adobe_final-877-edit 10-16_gensler_adobe_final-980-edit-2 10-16_gensler_adobe_final-1071-edit10-16_gensler_adobe_final-1130-edit 10-16_gensler_adobe_final-1376-edit10-16_gensler_adobe_final-1532-edit

Work Spaces and Break Rooms

9-15_gensler_adobe1-530-edit-edit9-15_gensler_adobe1-042-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-078-edit-edit  9-15_gensler_adobe1-159-edit-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-299-edit-edit-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-350-edit-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-426-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-503-edit-edit

Executive Lounges

9-15_gensler_adobe1-1434-edit9-15_gensler_adobe1-1706-edit-edit-editLayers Dining


9-15_gensler_adobe1-1166-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-1460-edit

Be Well Fitness Center

12-15_gensler_adobefitness-292-edit-edit1  12-15_gensler_adobefitness-355-edit-edit12-15_gensler_adobefitness-163-edit-edit 12-15_gensler_adobefitness-083-edit12-15_gensler_adobefitness-395-edit-edit

Palettes Dining

1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-098-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-151-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-016-edit-edit  1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-068-edit-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-284-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-386-edit-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-304-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-451-edit-edit1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-642-edit 1-16_gensler_adobe_palettes-609-edit

9-15_gensler_adobe1-1447-edit-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-1346-edit 9-15_gensler_adobe1-818-edit-edit

Pavement to Parks – Perkins+Will Playland @ 43rd Ave.

6-16_PW_Playland-474-EditSan Francisco’s “Pavements to Parks” program is an incredible organization that is testing the possibilities of underutilized areas along San Francisco’s streets and public rights-of way. Designed to be public laboratories for the City to work with communities and test new ideas in public, the projects are meant to be temporary with a possibility of permanence.

Designed Pro-bono by Perkins + Will, “Playland at 43rd Avenue” is an awesome demonstration of how transformative this program can be.

6-16_PW_Playland-294-Edit-Edit6-16_PW_Playland-052-EditPavement to Parks, Perkins+Will, ©EmilyHagopian6-16_PW_Playland-398-Edit6-16_PW_Playland-217-Edit


Study of Space – SF Workspace

When I visit a site, inherently I want to study the environment to see how people flow through it. How do they occupy the space? Where do they gather? What furniture do they actually use? With all my work, the intention is to understand how humanity interacts with the design. After that is clear I can then populate my imagery with people as they would truly utilize the space.

This video studies both the environment and photographic process at 888 Brannan, designed by Gensler, and Airbnb’s Offices in San Francisco, by Interior Design Fair.

VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre – Perkins+Will

sustainable design, LEED, Living Building Challange, Organic ArchitectureIntegrating both organic architectural design and sustainable building practices, the VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre in Vancouver is by far the most beautiful project included in my study of deep green architecture thus far.
sustainable design, LEED, Living Building Challange, Organic ArchitectureDesigned by Perkins+Will and engineered by Integral Group, the VanDusen Visitor Centre was named the Most Sustainable Building of 2014 by World Architecture News and was Canada’s first project to apply for Living Building Certification. With LEED-NC-Platinum certification the structure was designed to be net-zero energy, net-zero waste, and net-zero water.
sustainable design, LEED, Living Building Challange, Organic ArchitectureIn photographing the VanDusen I really wanted to see if I could capture something a little bit more than had been captured in the past. Structurally the building is breathtaking, no doubt. However, could the careful addition of people into the imagery bring this space to life?  I think so…

6-16_VanDusen815-Edit 6-16_VanDusen444-Edit 6-16_VanDusen401-EditIt was such an honor to photograph this site and to continue giving the VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre the publicity it deserves. It is an exciting addition to my collection of Deep Green Building and has energized me to keep the project moving forward.

For the full photo shoot please visit the “New Work” gallery on my website:




The Heart of the Tenderloin

11-15_PerkinsWill_TenderloinMuseum-0147_FinalNow, don’t get me wrong. I love photographing high-profile commercial projects. But to be truly honest, the work that brings me the most joy are those that are actively working toward uplifting the community they serve.
Architecture and design firm Perkins+Will did an awesome pro-bono historic renovation for the new Tenderloin Museum in San Francisco. This project, though small in scale, has an impact beyond measure. Focused on the rich history of the Tenderloin, known as a seedier part of the city, this museum shines a light on the neighborhood’s role in shaping San Franciscan heritage and American culture over the years.
While on-site photographing this project it became clear that the locals have established a symbiotic relationship with the museum and its general manager—the museum staff and neighbors look out for each other, and the museum has become a safe-haven for the city’s most vulnerable residents. It was inspiring to see the real ways in which the museum honors the community they represent.

For more information about this project visit the Perkins + Will blog.







The Road to Net Zero


I recently had the privilege to photograph DPR’s Net Zero offices in San Francisco for USGBC+ magazine. First of it’s kind in the city, this beautiful workplace has three green walls, light-sensitive skylights, and colorful, open, modern design.

Net Zero means in the course of one year this 24,000 square foot building should generate MORE power than it needs.

Seems like an excellent precedent.

Picking up where my graduate thesis left off long ago, DPR is one of the first shoots to be included in my new personal project documenting extraordinary efforts in sustainable design. Another featured project will be the Bullit Center in Seattle which is the WORLDS GREENEST COMMERCIAL BUILDING.

…quite amazing…see my previous post.




4-15_DPR_USGBC_Portrait062Ted van der Linden – LEED AP BD+C