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Interview with Zhu Jianhong

Home > Designer Interviews > Zhu Jianhong

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Zhu Jianhong (ZJ) for A’ Design Award and Competition. You can access the full profile of Zhu Jianhong by clicking here.

Interview with Zhu Jianhong at Saturday 25th of May 2019

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?
ZJ: I was a big fans of designing things when I was a child. So I chosen the design as major filed when I was in university. To have a design studio was my dream. I worked at a design company after graduated, then I set up my own design studio about one year later, because I want to design something to follow my own style and mind.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
ZJ: PHENOM DESIGN was set up in 2010, besides the professional architectural & interior design, we also do landscape design consulting. we are aiming to establish a professional environmental art design service platform. after 8 years accumulate and hard work, Our pragmatic and continuous research and development and the spirit of creation to win the recognition of customers, in the industry has also won a number of awards.

FS: What is "design" for you?
ZJ: In my opinion, design needs us solving the problem with creatively idea, to build up better environment and conditioning for living. Trying to match people's requirement in the smartest way with low cost and protect the environment is the must.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
ZJ: I like designing house with inhabitant's personality most.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
ZJ: My favorite design is our office - phenom office. This project is our office and daily life place, originally it is two layer with height of 5.5 meters stores building, we use the steel structure to separate the original first floor into two layers, the second floor is also added with the mezzanine. After the addition, it is a 3-storey building.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
ZJ: my friend's house was my first work. I was quite exciting and after communicating with my friend over 2 months, then I figured out the plan and finished the work smoothly, my friend was quite satisfied when it's done.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
ZJ: concrete ceiling slab and wood, and environmental protection plywood are my favorite material for interior design.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
ZJ: I really enjoy having a glass of whisky when I am working. because the good whisky makes me relax and have more new idea.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
ZJ: I always pay attention of the practicability of design, and environment protecting is the must.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
ZJ: I always feel concentration, exciting, anxiety when I work.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
ZJ: very exciting and satisficed, sometimes feel proud for my design and team when the design is done.

FS: What makes a design successful?
ZJ: well commucation, keep studying and curiosity for new things, never give up, I think these 3 points are very important for successful design.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
ZJ: practicability and convenience, art and style, green are always my consider.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
ZJ: as the designer, I think use more green energy to protect environment, sustainable development should be everyone's aim. also trying to build up higher quality of product and better life with lower cost, is another responsibility for society.

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
ZJ: Green, sustainable development, personality and with high technology are design's future. Design field will be evolving to be more personality and modernized.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
ZJ: I haven't organized any exhibition yet, looking forward to hold my own exhibition in the future.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
ZJ: I love travelling to looking around different world, and talk with different people, observe other people's work, etc.... to sum up, the major design inspiration is come from real life, keeping learning from other people's design, book, magazine and other ways is very important for keep my creativity.

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?
ZJ: The Modern Concise Style is my design style. Relax, comfortable, practical are main characteristics of this style.

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?
ZJ: I am living in Foshan, very traditional city in south of China. As Guangdong was open when I was a student, so I had a lot of chance to touch western style and information, I personally love Contemporary style, besides the practical, economize and hard working, the cultural heritage does not affect my design lot.

FS: How do you work with companies?
ZJ: Design is my basic work at Phenom studio, commutation with customer and colleague is another very important work, listening customer's request and go to project's site to learn more information, lead our team to have a design plan and turn it to be real.

FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
ZJ: I think inside commucation is the most important for a company, staff training and team building to keep company's activity and tacit understanding, also release designer's pressure in proper way is also important. for a good design, warm heart is the basic, easy to commutate, self study ability and responsibility are key fact to be a good designer.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
ZJ: face to face have a conversation with customer is the first step, to understand customer's request & quotation and project's basic information. Meanwhile, i will observe customer's personality and habit, try to design the things to match their preference. Then i will bring my team to the site to take some photos and get some actual date to learn more information about the project. Drew a draft design and keep commucation with customer and construction team, and do some adjustment and give some new suggestion to customer to get better work.

FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
ZJ: I like my book table, wine fridge, sofa, Combine-unit under the TV, and wine glassware.

FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
ZJ: working day always busy. after sending my child to school, if i do not go to project site or see customer directly, then i just go to office for working with colleagues. Most days, i have to work very late, or have dinner with customers or friends sometimes.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
ZJ: Don't give up and work hard for your dream, i think it's my own secret. Young designers need to be more patient, and keep studying ( design knowledge and relationship with different people), have more conversation with people from different industry, more travelling if it's possible.

FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
ZJ: i am really proud of myself be a designer. because people could get better living conditioning, the life they are satisfied through my work and idea. however, designer always need work late and little weekend, so i don't have that much time for my family, i feel a little bit sorry them.

FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
ZJ: well communication and practical design is my key rule.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
ZJ: I think study skill is the most important for a designer.

FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
ZJ: rules, pens, etc. Software is SKP, PHOTO SHOP, 3D, etc.

FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
ZJ: Most of my time are spent in office or meeting with customer. However, accompany family if i have time on weekend. and every year, i will travel to different country for about 10 days.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
ZJ: it depends on how big or small of that project. Usually, it is about 2- 3 months.

FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
ZJ: As a designer, i always ask :" how do you think & feel " to other people, to get new idea or adjustment of the design.

FS: What was your most important job experience?
ZJ: For myself, the most important experience was my partner sperate from my company, then i had to solve a lot of matters and faced a big challenge and pressure, my company got back to right way after almost one year.

FS: Who are some of your clients?
ZJ: Most our clients are individual people and some company clients, house, apartment, office and business project are major product.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
ZJ: i really enjoy thinking the design plan most, if my plan could be from paper or mind to be real existed, which proves that your idea is recognized, it's kind of achievement.

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
ZJ: I am planning to open a branch office in Shenzhen. Because Shen Zhen city is much bigger and modernized, where we can get more potential customer and better design, although we are going face more challenge, but more opportunity as well.

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
ZJ: Yes, i do work as a team although i am the chief designer, because i always think team is much stronger and powerful than one induvial person. so besides to develop myself and i also pay attention about team growth.

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
ZJ: we just finish a villa design and it's under the construction. it's introduced by my existing customer. Big project, would take about 6 months to get it done.

FS: How can people contact you?
ZJ: people can finds me from our phone number: 0086 757 86283605, or email address: 1654119685@qq.com.

FS: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
ZJ: not really, above question is already very detailed. thanks


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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