Yes, this IS what architects do.
Sometimes I find it difficult to put into words what it is that architects do, exactly. I can wax eloquent and profound about creative juices, about solving problems, about turning dreams into reality. I can show you with the simple addition of a jpg file on this blog site (see below a sketch of one of our custom residential projects), how ideas in your head added to the expertise of the architect and the skill of the AutoCAD techie, equal drawings on paper which then become a real, living, breathing, sheltering building.
But in the end, it's images that tell the tale. The link above from Dwell magazine, one of my favorite publications on modern design, shows in vivid images of a fantastic remodel exactly what architects do.
Architects take what you have and turn it into what you want. Simple! (stated VERY tongue-in-cheek!) Whether what you have is an existing building/problem in need of a design solution, or what you have is a dream, it can be transformed by the art, science, and technology of the architect.