J. Michael Welton

115 West Pine Avenue Wake Forest, NC 27587
Website: www.architectsandartisans.com

Professional Experience

I write about architecture, art and design for national publications like Dwell, Metropolis, Ocean Home, and Architectural Digest. For five years I’ve been architecture critic for The News & Observer in Raleigh. I’m the author of “Drawing from Practice: Architects and the Meaning of Freehand."


15 Years
Content Editor (online)
11 Years
Book Author
5 Years


Arts & Humanities
15 Years
15 Years
Home & Garden
15 Years


Magazine - Large Consumer/National magazines
15 Years
Magazine - Trade magazines/publications (B2B)
15 Years
Newspaper - Local/Regional
15 Years

Total Media Industry Experience

15 Years

Media Client List (# assignments last 2 yrs)

The News & Observer, Raleigh (10+), Dwell (10+), Ocean Home (10+), Metropolis (6-10)

Corporate Client List (# assignments last 2 yrs)

Gensler (10+)



Miami-based architect Jacob Brillhart has a penchant for uniting buildings with their landscapes—and nowhere is that more evident than in the dreamy new house he designed on man-made Di Lido Island in Miami Beach, Florida. "I wanted to bring the water into the site—hence the two pools," Brillhart says of the project, for which he teamed up with owner Emmanuel Sebag, architect of record Choeff Levy Fischman, and interior design studios Karine Richard Interiors and Dunagan Diverio Design Group.
LAST YEAR, WRITER THOMAS MCGUANE UPDATED The Longest Silence — his 1999 collection of essays on trout, tarpon, and bonefish — by adding 15 new chapters, including a final one called “Shrink to Fit: Fly Fishing While Old.” In that essay, he recounts how he wrote to old friends, asking them to contribute their thoughts on the subject. “This might be an ideal time to heave yourself off the sofa and toss me a few words from the abyss,” he suggested in the email. Eighteen of his friends responded, including television journalist Tom Brokaw, and famed musicians Huey Lewis and Jimmy Buffet. All have fished with McGuane — in Montana, Belize, and the Florida Keys, among other prime spots. And all enjoy his character and zest for life. “In our circle of friends, Tom is always at the center of attention,” Brokaw says of his pal, who lives just down the road from him in Montana’s Boulder Valley. “He knows how to start an argument and keep it going — speaking to all of us to find companionship with each other — and it’
The head of Perkins+Will’s cultural practice in North Carolina, Howard is bringing change to historically African-American neighborhoods from Miami to Vancouver and Los Angeles.
This year, as Black Lives Matter protests stirred a national awakening not seen since the civil rights movement, more attention has focused on Black-owned businesses and companies and the people behind them. In the Triangle, that means a spotlight on Black architects and designers who have created a series of sparkling buildings in the public realm, not just in their design, but in their celebration of diversity and inclusion. There’s a common thread among many of the designers I spoke with for this story: Phil Freelon. The late Durham architect, who died in 2019 from ALS, helped pave the way for them.
Twelve-year-old Hannah Cutler worked mightily last year to design and build a tiny cabin on an island in Puget Sound with her father, architect Jim Cutler. Along the way, she learned a valuable life lesson: If you can see it in your mind, you can make it. “It was an exercise for Hannah to learn that she could make things,” says Jim, who had decided to build a small cabin that could act as both his studio and a bunkhouse for his daughter when her friends sleep over.
A good word to describe Chapel Hill architect Phil Szostak: generous. It applies to his relationships with his peers, his clients and the communities he serves. It manifests itself physically, in some of the most pristine, light-filled and wide-open spaces in the Triangle today. And it’s the reason his classically modern buildings—public and private alike—seem built for the ages. “Phil has a real love for design, and he shares his passion with others,” says Bryan Bell, associate professor of architecture at N.C. State University’s College of Design. “You see it in his details, designs and materials.”
Small but mighty, a tiny carriage house in Southwest Harbor punches above its weight.
AS odd as it might sound, the only way Frank Konhaus, the founder of an audiovisual firm, was able to communicate the vision he had for his home was to fashion it out of Play-Doh. Never mind that the structure he imagined ? a residence for himself and his wife and a studio where they could host artists in residence, joined by a long gallery for their art collection ? had straight lines and trapezoidal rooms. Play-Doh was a medium that did not intimidate him, and that made collaborating with his wife, Ellen Cassilly, 48, an architect, much easier.