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Getting to Know:  Chris Hartsfield

May 5, 2015

Continuing our employee Q&A posts, today we share a brief interview with vice president of Allison Architects, Chris Hartsfield.  Chris has been at Allison Architects since 2001, and has served as project architect on many of the firm's projects.


Where did you grow up? 


My Dad was in the restaurant business when we were growing up, so I spent my early childhood in various cities around Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana.  When I was about 9 years old, he bought a restaurant in El Dorado, AR, and we lived there through my freshman year in college.


What is your favorite color?


Judging by the clothes in my closet, I’d probably say Blue.  Not very exciting, right?


Do you prefer to cook at home or eat at a restaurant?


Having grown up in restaurants, I love to cook.  It probably annoys my wife when she starts cooking and then I try to take over.  We also love to eat at locally established restaurants whether here in Little Rock or when we travel to other cities. Yelp and Urbanspoon are well used in our soccer travels.


Speaking of soccer travels, what do you like to do in your “free” time?


Free time is a funny word.  Most of my time outside of work is spent down at Junior Deputy baseball fields or with Arkansas United Soccer Club.  With three children actively playing sports, there rarely is free time in this family.  I do like to workout at the Little Rock Racquet Club and have run a few half-marathons.  In the summer, you can find the whole family at the LRRC pool.


How do you take your coffee?


Most of the time with creamer and one Sweet’N-Low.  I do like a cappuccino or mocha latte every now and then.


Where would you love to visit that you have not?


Having studied abroad in Europe for semester, I’ve been fortunate to have visited many great places there.  Areas in Europe that I’d love to visit, that I didn’t the first time:  England and Ireland.  In the US, I’d probably say New York City and Chicago.


Do you prefer to draw with a pen, pencil, or computer?


For sketching, I like pen.  But now most, if not all, of our drawing is done on the computer.


What led you to pursue a career in Architecture?


In seventh grade, we had to pick a profession that most interested us, do research on the profession, and write an essay.  I had always sketched and doodled when I was young.   We had a friend who was a land surveyor that suggested I look into Architecture.  Our high school offered Architectural Drafting I, II and III.  Back then it was still hand drafting.


What is the last book you read (or last movie you watched)?


 I have to confess.  Maybe it is my attention span, but most of my reading is done online or reading the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.  Last movie I saw at a theater was Disney’s Big Hero 6 with my wife and youngest son.  Recently, my wife, Jill, and I have been watching various documentaries on Netflix.


Do you have a favorite style of architecture or favorite architect?


From traditional to contemporary, I’ve come to appreciate most styles of architecture.  While in school, works by architects Ricardo Legorreta and Louis Barragan seemed to catch my eye.  Funny thing is, I've never designed a building (in school or in my professional career) in that style of architecture.


What is one of your favorite aspects of being an architect?


Each project is different, which I find exciting.  Some projects are more challenging than others, which I like.  Architecture allows me to be creative, but also challenges me at the same time, and I like that.





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