Started midical school in the early 80's and decided I was not cut out for it. An uncle of mine is in the "Stone Business" and asked me to join him. After a two year technical course I started working for him and was immediately sent to Carrara, Italy, to "learn the business" :-).
I spent two years living with or near our main fabricator and learning the cutting end of it. Then another 6 being in charge of fabrication for any thing that was being procured in Italy.
During that period I started thinking that I would rather be the Architect, than the sub-contractor.
After the early 90's recession, I left my uncle's company and freelanced for a while. I then had an offer to move to NY and become the head estimator for one of the up and coming firms in the city.
I took a bet with myself. I Applied to RISD and only RISD, I would either get in there or take the job.
Well, I was accepted at the school :-)
In my last yeat at RISD I took a studio that was run by Gensler, with one of our critics. The chemistry was there so I went to Gensler as soon as I graduated. I was with them in NY for 6 years.
During that time I was asked to be the interim CAD manager while they looked for a replacement for one that left in a hurry.
That took 9 months and then I spent another 9 or so collaborating with the new manager. When Gensler started the 3D and multimedia group, I was appointed to be the representative for the NY office. At that point I was pushing as hard as I could for modelling in MS and then staying in to to render. As some of you know, I spent a good many years participating in the Viz forum with many a suggestion.
In 2001 I moved to London and staid with Gensler but things were different in this office and did not work out. In early 2002 I moved to F+P, where I remained until early 2009.
At F+P I spent the first two years in the workplace consultancy team, because of my Gensler experience, then starting with the collaboaration on a project for Steelcase, I moved to the Priduct design team, where I spent another 2 years or so. Finally, I joined an Architecture Studio and for nearly two years I worked on a large project in Madrid.
During the time at F+P I continued my involvement in testing software and moved on to Maxwell (mostly) for my rendering needs. I collaborated very closely with Matt on the implementation of the Maxwell exporter and had hoped to see that project through to the next level.
When Bentley licensed the Luxogy engine I joined the Luxology community and was one of the testers from the initial stages. I now use both Luxology and Maxwell, depending on the type of render, as I find that Maxwell still has the edge for interiors with many lights.