So I've found I really enjoy doing this and now I need to start building a portfolio of work. So a little bit about my experience. I've used the Unreal Editor, Doom3 Editor, and both Gold Source/Source. Right now I'm mostly using Valve's Source Engine. I've got three goals to reach one being to pull off some impressive outdoor maps and two to improve architectural work. The last goal is to continue to improve my design abilities as far as enjoyable/interesting gameplay is concerned. I've built quite a few houses etc before with the source engine, but I really want to push the architectural side of things. I've done some work with AUTOCAD and have been thinking about pulling off some accurate/believable buildings using what I've learned.
Okay, so the plan to actually pull this off includes a variety of things. One is to enter more competitions to farther my skill. Another is to continue my interest in architectural design building various houses etc into the maps I build. Working on a mod team is another. Another important one is to explain my level design decisions and why they work/make sense, this blog being a great place to do that. I'm pretty sure there is more I need to do and hopefully I'll find out as I go along.