Computational Designer | Associate

Raleigh, NC


With more than 15 years of experience, Ryan Johnson’s project experience ranges from higher education facilities to commercial buildings and parking decks. He founded and led our internal Tech Studio for five years.

“The more intimate a craftsman is with their tools and materials, the better the product they create. The tools and our relationship with them have such a strong connection with what we are able to create. As architects the tools we use is technology. It wasn’t that way 20 years ago but it is now.”

But technology comes second to architecture for him. He is most interested in applying technology as it relates to the building envelope. “For me, the facade is the most exciting part of a building. Not only does it impact the look and aesthetics of the building, but it affects building performance, daylighting and energy use.”

Ryan believes innovation best comes organically during the process of design. “When there is a deadline, my gut is to try something new to get it done faster or better or differently vs. defaulting to doing it the same old way. I am spending a lot of time printing pdf’s, I look for a tool that can automate that process. Or if I don’t have a way to visualize 9,000 cans for a CANstruction project, I create a script that helps us with the design.”

Ryan currently serves as chair of the The American Institute of Architects Technology in Architecture Practice (TAP). He was asked to serve on the National Advisory Group in 2017 for a two-year term. This AIA Knowledge Community monitors the development of computer technology and its impact on architecture practice and the entire building life cycle, including design, construction, facility management, and retirement or reuse.

Ryan holds a Master of Architecture from NC State University and a Bachelor of Science in industrial drafting and design from Appalachian State University. When he’s not working, he likes to travel, play video games, and play keyboards (including his Synthesizers) for his church.