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Interview with Lisa Zhou

Home > Designer Interviews > Lisa Zhou

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Lisa Zhou (LZ) for A’ Design Awards and Competition. You can access the full profile of Lisa Zhou by clicking here.

Interview with Lisa Zhou at Friday 18th of April 2014
Lisa Zhou
FS: Could you please tell us more about your art and design background? What made you become an artist/designer? Have you always wanted to be a designer?
LZ: As a child, I always like to design and draw out my imagination but then I grew up to study and work in the IT industry. It was through my own engagement ring design experience with a jeweller that reignited my passion for creativeness. Since then I took a leap of faith and study Jewellery and Object Design/Making at the Design Center Enmore in Sydney Australia and started my own contemporary jewellery brand Little Rambutan in 2012. I have never look back since.

FS: What is "design" for you?
LZ: Design is a way to express the designer’s ideas or interpretation of a topic into a tangible object of aesthetics.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
LZ: Favourite material is gold because of its lustre and history.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
LZ: When I am travelling as history, people and culture in different cities never stop to amaze me.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
LZ: I focused on aesthetics and making sure it is strongly aligned with the design concepts.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
LZ: Anticipation and excitement of what the final design will look like, but at the same time quite critical of the design for any room of improvement.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
LZ: Fulfilment and relaxation – time for celebration.

FS: What makes a design successful?
LZ: When the design concept is self-explanatory to others on its own.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
LZ: A good design has to have a unique element that stands out from other designs. It also needs to be quite intuitive as to what it does or how it can be used.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
LZ: Safety of the product and sustainability of the production process in terms of resources, environmental impact and workers working conditions.

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
LZ: As 3D technology becomes more accessible to the public, I think there will be an increase in 3D printed products due to the lower barrier of entry to the design industry. While there will a surge of both good and bad designs, as an industry I believe it is important to keep an open mind while having careful curation of products to ensure the quality of design.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
LZ: Big and small miracles from nature as well as historical artefacts/objects/jewelleries of different civilisation. I feed my creativity by visiting museums, travelling and getting close to nature.

FS: How would you describe your design style? What made you explore more this style and what are the main characteristics of your style? What's your approach to design?
LZ: I would describe my style to be contemporary and elegant. It is about designing motifs in a new modern way but not losing a sense of feminine and elegance to it.

FS: Where do you live? Do you feel the cultural heritage of your country affects your designs? What are the pros and cons during designing as a result of living in your country?
LZ: I live in Australia and I don’t feel the cultural heritage affects my design. The pro of Australia is the relax and friendly environment of the country and that helps a lot in terms of getting ideas to design. The only con is that it is geologically so far away from the rest of the world.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
LZ: I normally come up with a theme and I will brainstorm to get a mind map of breakdown ideas. After selection of the strongest ideas, visual and background research on them will be done. I will then crystallise the concept and sketch out variations. The sketches will go through few iterations until I am satisfied with it.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
LZ: Be active and get yourself known to others by taking part in competitions, joining design communities and engaging in collaborations with other designers.

FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
LZ: Do not compromise quality and durability.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
LZ: Apart from ability to design and think outside the box, it is also important to convey yourself and your idea effectively and confidently to others – may it be friends or a potential buyer. Keep in mind also the cost of productions to make sure the design is economically viable.

FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
LZ: Pencil and sketchbook for idea sketching and rhinoceros 3D for 3D modelling.

FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
LZ: Break down each goal into small tasks and assign each day with achievable tasks. If you set yourself impossible deadlines, it will affect your confidences and delay the project.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
LZ: Normally 3-4 months.

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
LZ: The next step for me is a themed jewellery collections consisting of 15-20 designs. It is very exciting and I am in the research phase now developing the concepts and ideas.

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
LZ: I develop my designs myself.

FS: How can people contact you?
LZ: They can email me anytime at lisa.zhou@littlerambutan.com


FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.

A’ Design Award and Competitions grants rights to press members and bloggers to use parts of this interview. This interview is provided as it is; DesignPRWire and A' Design Award and Competitions cannot be held responsible for the answers given by participating designers.


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