contact maria lorena lehman

send your message

Thank you! Your submission has been received!

Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form

special encore webinar presentation

Register for the FREE Special Encore Webinar Presentation that will teach you three techniques for creating extraordinary design concepts that outsmart problem complexity.


How to Improve Architectural Design for Occupants


Maria Lorena Lehman


Founder — Sensing Architecture ® Academy

Micro-Lecture Introduction

How can you improve your architectural design for occupants? In this Micro-Lecture, you will learn why sensory design is so critical for your architectural designs – while also discovering how to use it to optimize the positive impact of your environments for occupants.


Micro-Lecture Transcript

00:01 Maria Lorena Lehman: I am Maria Lorena Lehman, Founder of Sensing Architecture. And in this micro-lecture, we’re going to uncover a question I get asked about frequently. The question is, “How can I improve my architectural designs to bring greater benefit to occupants?” A critical and pivotal answer to this question is sensory design. You see, at the core of sensory design is neuroscience. And with neuroscience, you can learn through your design to feed occupant senses, so you can better tune your architecture to the changing needs and goals of your occupants.

00:44 MLL: You can do this as an architect by seeing more deeply into your architectural design and by better understanding your occupants’ needs, not just their one-time needs, but also their longer-term goals. You can not only position materials within space, within your architecture, but with sensory design you can begin to orchestrate materials in time, to synchronize the stimuli that your materials emit to feed occupants through their senses, so that you can tap into the five levels of occupant experience. These are the physiological, the intellectual, the emotional, the behavioral, and the spiritual.

01:33 MLL: Using sensory design, you can really fine-tune your architecture to be more personalized, to improve the way you design so that you can see more deeply, to really solve for occupant need, and support, foster, and nurture their longer-term goals. This is how you can design to expand the human horizon.


what members are saying...
Maria: I came across your website through a reference in today's Architect Weekly ezine and am delighted I did. I'll bookmark your site and check back often. I read the first article and then the second and thirty minutes later realized how much time had passed. I've been practicing for thirty years and have always missed the stimulation of academia. I find each of your brief dissertations sort of like a day in design studio. Thanks for the inspiration.

Ron Ward
AI Group Design
I am excited to see you touch a vein of values in architecture, I have been chasing myself for years. Your depth of involvement in these very deep subjects is really beautiful and passionately dealt with and well written. Sound, color and value, shape, texture, scale, smell.... all definitive measures of the spaces we should be alert to. [...] I will savor the rest of your investigation of sensuality in architecture. I'm Glad I found you.

Dennis McLaughlin
McLaughlin Architect
read more testimonials
blog article categories

Maria Lorena Lehman is a visionary author, designer, and educator from the United States. Maria holds a Bachelor of Architecture with Honors from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and a Master in Design with Distinction from Harvard University Graduate School of Design.

maria lorena lehman, as seen in...
featured posts
Architectural Design

The Gap between Your Creative Vision and Design Tools

As architects, often there is a gap between the vision for a building design and the existence of materials available with which it can be built. Yet, the gap between creative vision and creative tools is also just as important --- but in a different way.

Design Process

Fusing Science with Poetics for “Design Beauty” Innovation

As you design your architectural concept, it may help you to think of design features and their materials as exuding both scientific and poetics effects. For the scientific, one may question how a particular design was achieved. While for the poetic, one may question how a particular effect was captured. In either case, the scientific understanding when coupled with poetic meaning leads can lead to amazing beauty.

Design Process

The Role of "Unbuildable Ideas" In Your Design Process

What if while designing, your creative exploration takes you down a path toward an architectural idea that is "unbuildable"? Once you make the realization that your design approach cannot be physically realized…what do you do next?