We had the good fortune of connecting with Scott Hanson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Scott, every day, we about how much execution matters, but we think ideas matter as well. How did you come up with the idea for your business?
The evolution of this as a business has been pretty organic. My career started in architecture but quickly moved into many types of different work, ranging from hands-on manufacturing and fabrication, to millwork, finish carpentry, and running jobsites. Fast forward over the last decade and most of my work has been in project-management on the construction of ultra-high-end architectural homes. This is fascinating and complex work and it’s still something that I really enjoy given the constant learning and problem solving involved with building some of the world’s most architecturally challenging homes.
But to clear my head and balance all the meetings and spreadsheets, I would design and build furniture and small structures in my free time. As the pandemic shook up everything, I found myself with more time to spend on these projects. Simultaneously, with everyone stuck at their homes, I began getting more requests from people about ways to improve their own spaces. The requests weren’t always simple pieces of furniture and more often needed to solve many problems at once, but I realized that with my background, I was able to come up with clever solutions that really crossed the lines of what a traditional designer or woodworker would be able to pull off. This was really the genesis for Hanson Works as a business – bringing the best parts of what an architect, woodworker, metalworker, and contractor can do but all under one roof. The idea is to keep it at an intentionally small scale to actually be able manage all those parts myself.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve always sort of struggled with how to categorize what I do in simple terms. Am I a furniture maker? An interior designer? An artist? Architect? Contractor? None of these labels catch all of it and I’ve grown more comfortable with that. I used to want to define this as something really straight-forward but my work really bridges all of these disciplines. Ultimately, my projects need to respond to so many things and it takes all parts of the brain (and a steady hand) to make it work – there’s function, aesthetics, craftsmanship, along with practicalities of budgets and physics. At its best, my work addresses all of these while giving my clients something that’s truly personal, beautiful, and built to last a lifetime.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Los Angeles is almost too big to unpack in any single trip – not only geographically but also in the huge range of activities at your fingertips. Everyone knows it for its art, culture, entertainment, and food, but what most people don’t know is that it’s also an incredible place for outdoor activities. I would focus on this because its such a fun surprise to show people the less publicized parts of this city. It all depends on the season and weather but my ideal day would be an early morning surf where sunset blvd meets the ocean, hiking to the helicopter pad in Griffith Park, biking along Ballona Creek back out to the beach, and catching the sunset with some pizza from Manhattan Pizzeria right off the Manhattan Beach pier.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Since all my work is custom, there’s a really special partnership with each client. They have a problem to solve or some kind of vision and it’s my job to listen to them and translate their thoughts into a real, physical object or space that neither of us could have come up with on our own. There’s a lot of collaboration and trust in that dynamic and it’s one of my favorite parts about doing what I do.
All photos by me, no need to credit separately.