Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Yasumichi Morita (YM) for A’ Design Awards and Competition. You can access the full profile of Yasumichi Morita by clicking here.
Interview with Yasumichi Morita at Tuesday 22nd of April 2014
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?
YM: No. There was nowhere I wanted to go, so I determined to create/designe somewhere I would want to go.
FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
YM: My studio is based in Tokyo, Japan and involved with projects all over the world. We have wide range of categories and design each project like haute couture, thinking of the best way to express the project, so our design varies one by one.
FS: What is "design" for you?
YM: It is important aspect in this world to make something interesting, joyful and creative. It is different from Art and my mission as a designer is to aim for commercial success as always.
FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
YM: Daydreams. But they almost come true as they are.
FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
YM: Lighting. It is a very important aspect for my design.
FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
YM: A bar called COOL in Kobe, Japan when I was at the age of 18. It is still there as it was completed then.
FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
YM: Natural materials like wood, soil, stone etc..
FS: When do you feel the most creative?
YM: When I see many people gathering in a space. I think design/creation will have no meaning without people.
FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
YM: Lighting for interior designing. For product design, I'd like to change non-common sense to common sense.
FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
YM: I try not to be high; I shall be level-headed in order to see my design from the third person.
FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
YM: I feel, yes it is just what I expected/imagined. Designer should be able to imagine what it will be when completed.
FS: What makes a design successful?
YM: Repeaters. I suppose a project needs at least 30% repeaters to be successful so I try to design something/somewhere to be used/visited for long.
FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
YM: Many people will see public spaces and I use natural materials to keep blessings of nature. But I don't want to go too far, to keep the good balance.
FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
YM: My art exhibition "What's! Gold!?" was held in April and May last year in Tokyo. I'd like to hold another when I have a decision what I wan to express next.
FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
YM: From my daydreams/imaginations; I imagine a beautiful lady dating with me in a nice restaurant, bar, hotel, resort, spa...any hospitality design. Without people around in design on my mind, I cannot design.
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?
YM: Happy style with surprises.
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?
YM: I live in Tokyo. Japanese design is delicate and bold from any point of view. Good points: the flexibility, ability to create in a free way and cosmopolitan Week point: Few historical monuments/buildings in the city.
FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
YM: To be a good designer, organizational skill is important.
FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
YM: Starting from daydreams, I sumilate the design on my mind before layout planning, then I design a rough layout and perspective/3D plan at the same time. When the layout is finished, 3D perspective is almost there.
FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
YM: Piano painted by my friend artist, Masataka Kurashina. Recycled Hermes scarves in art frames. Lamps at terrace. Home studio filled with my favorite things. My wife's dresser table surface coverd with crocodile leather.
FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
YM: Workout at gym twice a week in the morning. Meetings from noon to evening. Supper with friends. Go home.
FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
YM: Get organized!
FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
YM: Positive: I can go where I designed and I can use something I designed. Negative: None. Because being a designer for me, is to make people happy.
FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
YM: Space: Beautiful shade and shadow to create depth. Product: Functionality. It is important if 'I' want to go/use the space/product.
FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
YM: Communication skill because you cannot avoid it. And a sense of humor.
FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
YM: Tracing paper and a pen worth of US$5.
FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
YM: My time is managed by my assistant! lol I need some free time to plan.
FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
YM: It varies per project. Sometimes it's an easy delivery, sometimes not.
FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
YM: "When do you plan?" because they think I'm too busy to plan.
FS: What was your most important job experience?
YM: For each project, under the limited budget, how much I can express/create is important. I try not to give up even though there is little budget.
FS: Who are some of your clients?
YM: Starwood, Disney, Baccarat, Joel Robuchon, Paul Bocuse, LLADRÓ, Lucien Pellat-Finet, Audemars Piguet, Cotton Club, Sapporo Beer, Isetan, Hiramatsu, Tokyo Tatemono and so on.
FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
YM: Everything is fun.
FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
YM: Probably the largest chandelier of the world. I'm tring to break the Guinness World Record for it!
FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
YM: As a team.
FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
YM: Morimoto signature restaurant, at The Shelborne Wyndham Grand South Beach in Miami to open in June 2014. 5 & 6F of Isetan Shinjuku Store. Two restaurants in Taiwan hotel and a restaurant in Las Vegas.
FS: How can people contact you?
YM: Please email firstname.lastname@example.org
FS: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
YM: I haven't done any project in Italy, and I'm eager to do so.
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