KBB Collective | The Designers' Corner

Archive for Creativity

Jun 04 2018

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Celebrating Emerging Talent

ICFF and Bernhardt Design have announced the winners of the 13th-annual ICFF Studio. Every year, Bernhardt Design partners with ICFF to invite emerging designers and new talents to submit their unique concepts and innovative designs for evaluation by a jury of some of the industry’s top professionals. The finalists and their work were presented to the design industry in a special exhibition at ICFF.

“We receive entries from across North America and throughout the world that continually blow us away for their thoughtfulness, creativity and technique,” said Coleman Gutshall, director of global strategy for Bernhardt Design. “ICFF Studio helps propel many of these exciting new designers to international acclaim and rewarding careers.”

The ICFF Studio 2018 winners are:

1. Cecilia Zhang – Discrete Shelf / Stool – Bergen, Norway

2. Chenchen Fan – Lavida Chair – Toronto, Canada

3. Jialun Xiong – Back Kaleidoscope – Pasadena, Calif.


4. Sasipat Leelachart – Sensi Chair – Bangkok, China

5. Nupur Haridas – Snug – Los Angeles

6. Kelly Kim – Mokum – San Francisco, Calif.

7. Haeun Kim – Fog Table – Los Angeles

8. Adam Markowitz – Assegai – Melbourne, Australia


9. Christian Golden – Stackable Wooden Rocker No. 1 – Columbus, Ohio

10. Yeling Guo – Nostalgia – Pasadena, Calif.

 11. Huan Pei – Froz – Pasadena, Calif.

To enter the competition, a designer must have been in the industry five years or more and have a working prototype that is not in commercial production. Submissions are evaluated and judged on design aesthetics, the ability to be economically mass produced, marketability and commercial viability.

May 25 2018

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Have a Seat in the Forest

Have a Seat

The Maine College of Art students explored wood, trees and the forest in the 14th Wilsonart Challenges Student Chair Design Competition. The chairs were designed around the concept of standing in the forest and being alone with a tree. The theme of this year’s competition focuses on the importance of Maine’s timber industry and Wilsonart’s commitment to educate design professionals about responsibly sourced wood.

The winning chair – “Tool for Translation” by Joseph Goodwin (above) – was designed around the idea of a chainsaw becoming the chair through flowing curves and geometry.

The following is his description of his chair:

As a cultural icon, the chainsaw is perhaps more fraught with contradictions than any other everyday object. The power tool is representative of competing ideologies, disparate politics and contentious debate. By translating these complexities into a refined, simplistic chair form, Goodwin attempts to draw our attention to the irony of being not one or the other, but both simultaneously. The universal language of geometry can mediate the divide between opposing viewpoints and can be a catalyst for constructive dialog. The chainsaw represents the threshold where a tree’s life ends, and a chair’s life begins.

The Runners-Up
Holey Blue by Kincaid Pearson
“My chair is an abstract representation of being in the woods during the night and looking up at the sky. I wanted to create a design that is more pattern based and reflects the silhouettes of the tree branches reaching across the night sky. I was looking to give the sitter a sense of being isolated, a feeling that is like being in the woods.”

Oxide by Dan Trottier
The origin of “Oxide” stemmed from my finding a broken, plastic Adirondack chair in the forest. There was something so cyclical about a chair design that was inspired by mountains, mass produced and domesticated and then returned to nature to be reclaimed and decay. It was, by definition, feral. That word, feral, became integral to Oxide’s form. The idea of designing from a broken state and still honoring the dilapidation with intentionality. The form of the chair is skewed and precarious to convey a sense of unkempt abandon. The chair shades itself with different tones of slate, while one rusty element pierces through, suggesting the imminence of the oxidation process covering the entire mass is yet to come.”

 

L ‘Dor V ‘Dor (From Generation to Generation) by Naomi Russo
“The concept of this chair relates back to the woods and my family. As a tree falls over in the woods, that tree may not hit the ground but will rather be held up by the other trees surrounding it. The same applies for a line of generations. As one ancestor may pass, the following generations are there to remember them. That ancestor may have passed, but they are not forgotten. The seat that pierces through the center of the piece is an ode to that fallen tree or lost ancestor. They may have fallen, but they have not been forgotten and are still carried on through their legacy. This chair gives the sitter two options for places to sit within the piece. There is also the option to sit alone on the chair, or with someone else, while using the chair as a means to start a conversation.”

Ascend by Jason Haskell
“The concept behind Ascend was to figure out how to incorporate the feeling of physical movement, the uplifting sensation of having a seat higher than normal and also the emotion nature presents when you interact with it. The form of the chair when put together is supposed to represent a tree trunk, along with the different levels of seats to signify different heights of branches, each placed at a certain point that is suitable for any climber. The woodgrain on the outside of the form grabs the attention and sparks the idea that this is a tree-based object, along with the inside woodgrain that reassures that thought. With the red tops being the last element to the piece, this color is for seating arrangement – a small indication of where you can end up.”

Please, Sit by Daniel Iwasko
“This chair was created after an experience in the woods where I found myself sitting at the base of a tree with a guitar. I found that the roots formed a perfect backrest for me as I was sitting at the base of a tree. Sitting there on the ground was very comfortable, and I wanted to recreate that feeling.”

“A year ago in Montana, I was drawing chairs in my basement at night after work and now I am headed to ICFF to show my design,” said Goodwin. “The path between those points is insane and to say that I’m ecstatic would be an understatement. I’m so grateful to Grace and you all for allowing me the freedom to make such an unorthodox piece that will be a portfolio booster as well as a conversation starter for some difficult cultural and environmental issues we face. I hope that moving forward my piece might open the door for designers to think conceptually and metaphorically about the power furniture can have and how material choices can enhance content within not just sculpture but also design.”

May 14 2018

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A Good Deed for Animals

At the recent 2018 Coverings show, we got the chance to play with PUPPIES! The Tile Council of North America and 14 of its member companies celebrated a special program in which custom dog houses were designed and built using forms donated by Wedi and the Tile Council of North America.

The 14 charming dog houses were displayed in the Art Tile Courtyard during Coverings before they were donated to the Homeless Pets Foundation. The organization, founded by local veterinarian Dr. Michael Good, is dedicated to finding forever homes for cats and dogs in Atlanta-area animal shelters and promoting the benefits of pet ownership.

And on the day KBB was there, we got to hang out with four puppies who were part of the courtyard experience. Having been a volunteer with Atlanta-area animal shelters for about seven years now, this initiative was near and dear to my heart, and I never get tired of petting and playing with puppies, kittens and their adult counterparts.

American Wonder Porcelain designed a dog house to emulate the black and white trend that is popular in the surfacing industry. Titled “A Vision in Black & White,” the house features basket weave, penny round, octagon, hexagon and curve mosaics in the two popular shades.

Lunada Bay Tile’s Modern Barkitecture” was inspired by a design-loving dog and features the architectural shapes of Ka-nu Keel ceramic tile in Harbor Blue, which features a subtly pearlized glaze. The front and back walls are a combination of Ka-nu Buoy Mosaic in Sandbar, Harbor Blue and Sea Kelp, and the house is trimmed in Ka-nu Plank in Sea Kelp.

Mar 30 2018

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Lessons from the Design Bloggers Conference


The Design Bloggers Conference in Beverly Hills, Calif. this month drew hundreds of designers, entrepreneurs, journalists and others interested in unraveling the intricacies of what makes a blog a true business asset. They also covered how to create an effective social media marketing plan. Here’s some advice from the experts:

Be Serendipitous

Algorithms — those pieces of data that tell social media sites like Facebook an Instagram what you “like,” share and click on for more information — help expose us to more of the great things we love. The caveat, however, is that they also tend to weed out the posts that don’t fit into our “like” patterns. That in turn creates a narrow, highly-focused vision, eliminating exposure to different points of view and options for staying open-minded and well-rounded.

According to Adam Japko, founder of Esteem Media and the Design Bloggers Conference, this is why influencer marketing is taking off. Just let things be serendipitous and allow the unexpected to happen.

Build Collaborative Relationships

Build a network of professionals you can rely on, including photographers, trades, designers, trade associations, manufacturers and publishers. Provide each other recommendations and leads.

Chances are, if you are kind and easy to work with, you will be sought out by other professionals, thus creating a strong team in your design community.

Build Additional Income Streams

With technology at our fingertips, there are so many options for generating additional income streams. For instance, creating a blog provides opportunities to advertise manufacturers and brands, feature sponsored content, link to affiliate companies, provide advice columns and create eDesign for clients.

Stand Out

Find your unique story to stand out and capitalize on that as part of your branding efforts. Brands leveraging philanthropic initiatives are trusted, memorable and respected among all. Look at ways to connect your brand with something that gives back in a meaningful way.

At the conference, we learned about Savvy Designs, a company creating magical spaces for ill children enduring major challenges at a young age, and Save Iconic Architecture, a group that protects and preserves iconic architecture in California.

You can also look to create your own unique story promoting your specialty — what really makes you special. Do you have a story to tell with color? Are you specialized in small spaces, childproofing, yacht design or historic homes? Identify what differentiates you and play up these strengths.

Embrace the Evolution of Technology

Adapting to social strategies, algorithms and platforms is a way of the future — but remember, nothing is forever.

Be prepared for disruption. It is inevitable and will continue to happen. We’re all in this together, so ask for help!

Visit https://nkba.org/info/2018/03/5-tips-elevating-business for more information.