What made you want to become a designer in the first place?
Growing up I was always taking things apart as I was fascinated to see how things worked or how they were made. I am still intrigued today and now my greatest pleasure comes from visiting new factories to see what machines I can play with.
Where did you study design?
I studied Furniture design and Leeds Metropolitan University. I actually applied for Product design and completed the first term but switched courses to Furniture. I felt the product course was too focused on the shell or stylistic skin of an object as opposed to how things were put together. Furniture had more basic functionalities to overcome like the structure and the material of an object and you needed a much greater grasp of construction.
What was the first thing you designed?
The first mass produced piece of furniture I designed was the “Snoozy” bed for inflate which was a stackable rotationally moulded bed.
How do you define good design?
In my opinion good design is an intelligent use of material and processes that can effortlessly answer a problem in a simplistic way.
What would you be if not a designer?
Before discovering a world of art and design I had visions of being an underwater cameraman, now however it would have to be in a nice sunny climate!
I currently like the pendant lights I have developed for a recent interior project called la Petite Bretagne a London Creperie (See above). The project consisted of mainly bespoke designed objects within the space, which suited my way of working. The pendant lights were developed for the project from powder coated spun aluminium and CNC turned wood and with just 4 wks from concept to installation. This forced my hand to not overcomplicate the design and produce something locally and efficiently. I like the simplicity of the lights and the project constraints give me a further personal validation of the product. The lights will now go into production and will be taken on by Isomi and shown at 100%. It will be isomi’s debut at 100% and along with the lights I will be presenting the newly launched Mono collection which is a modular Hi-Macs seating and desk range. We will also be showing the “Void” coffee table again in Hi-Macs.
Anything in your career you wish you’d done differently?
There are always things I would have done differently but I regard each project experience as an essential tool for development. You only learn from your mistakes and you should never be afraid to experiment!
Which designers do you most admire?
Most of the furniture greats and too many to name.
Which product do you wish you’d designed/do you think is an example of good design?
The Likeabike (a child’s starter bike made from plywood without pedals) is a great bit of design. Not so much for its ultimate aesthetic qualities but more for its use of materials in this market. It’s produced from a really simple process of cnc cut plywood and the result is something that you might just hand down to your grandchildren. A rare thing in sea of plastic children’s products!
What will have the greatest impact on your design in the future?
I think the greatest impact will come through the discovery of new processes and materials but ultimately having the opportunity to work with great clients and manufacturers.
If you could ask yourself one question, what would it be? And what would be the answer?
Do I really have to answer this question? Not if you don’t want to!