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Interview with Seyed Hamed Jafari

Home > Designer Interviews > Seyed Hamed Jafari

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

Interview with Seyed Hamed Jafari at Tuesday 5th of May 2020
Seyed Hamed Jafari
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?
SHJ: I grew up in a family that had passion for art and design such as sculpture designing, drawing, painting, and architectural designing. Initially though I didn’t follow my passion of designing and architecture because in Iran there was a University Admission Exam that I had to score really high to get into my favourite university’s architecture program. Instead, I entered undergraduate program in electrical engineering. After few years gone by and unpassionately completing this major, fortunately, I was able to regroup myself and realize what my true educational and career passion has been throughout all these years. So, finally, at 31 years old, I decided to take the opportunity to follow my passion. This time I was extremely motivated and driven; this time I admired the new opportunity that life put in front of me to pursue what I always wanted. So, I studied 10 times harder for the University Admission Exam even though everything was much more difficult due to having a family and working full time at the same time. So, I finally was able to enter my favourite program with high score this time. Now, I feel completely fulfilled and driven in the path I always dreamed to be in, to be able to learn, explore and create innovative designs.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
SHJ: I initially established this company in 2008 with less architectural works in it. It was more related to electrical engineering field. But, as I pursued my passion more and more, I re-structure this company’s work, name, and partnership i.e. few years later, I partnered with my wife who we worked together on designing Rouzan Residential Building. We have exclusive clients and we choose our clients very selectively because we want to follow our architectural philosophy and guidelines in creating new designs, thematic with Iranian ancient heritage and culture blending it with new modern themes to provide comfort of presence and intimacy of the past. Our company’s motto is, a design should be minimalistic, simple, and accessible for all people.

FS: What is "design" for you?
SHJ: Designing is a grandmother field meaning it is interconnected with other industries at core. Designing to me, is capturing progressive and controversial arts, enriching it with spirits of past heritage specific to each neighbourhood, and placing a mysterious futuristic approach in it that often goes unnoticed and unfolds its value as the design age older into future like the Egyptian Pyramids.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
SHJ: I mostly enjoy designing innovative and simple modernistic themes but entailing repetitive past-valued architectural inspirations shown in simple details like even a room orientation, window frames, and more.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
SHJ: This Rouzan Residential Building design was my favourite to date design because I was liberated and completely trusted by the client. Thus I could implement ideas that most clients may not feel comfortable with in designing from interior insulating systems all the way into façade, canopies and more.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
SHJ: It was when I was 20 years old. Even though I had no professional degree, I came up with a façade design for my family’s commercial building design at the time. Since my family liked my design, they trusted me into collaborating my ideas with the lead architect so that he could implement my ideas the best way professionally he was able to.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
SHJ: One of my favourite professors used to say, an architect finds his touch in what materials to use as his experiences grow. For me, I don’t have favourite material to choose from because for each design, I choose materials that are each correspond to the theme of that design. I usually like to supervise every single detail that used because they all add up to tell the story of the overall design for example specific doorknobs, parking door roller, brick type, woodwork, and more to follow. When It comes to platform and technology, I try my best to be up-to-date and not get used to what I am comfortable with because my main goal is to learn new features, skills, and technology gadgets out there so that I can come even closer to manifesting exact design that I visualize in my mind into the reality.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
SHJ: I mostly see it like acting. When I am working on a design, its like I go into this acting role to live with the design that I see in my mind. I live, sleep, and my mind is at the same time pre-occupied with it as days goby and as the mental image is becoming more and more clear to me, until I feel every single detail of the deign is physical to me and that’s when I start drawing sketches and miniature version of the design. So there is no specific time or a routine that I do that makes me most creative. Its just letting it be and living with it.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
SHJ: Each neighbourhood’s story and its texture is very important for me when designing. I'd like my design to provide and add value to its neighbours, to make the residents feel comfort and the design to feed their purpose

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
SHJ: I feel sense of fulfillment when designing because I see my designs like a problem solving and a solution to a problem and that is to acquire what my clients’ needs are and how can I orchestrate all other aspects of the design to serve those needs but also follow my design guidelines.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
SHJ: Most satisfactory feeling that can happen for an architect, is when my design is meeting my clients’ needs feasibly and practically. I feel as if the design was like an embryo which comes to life as the design realizes into the reality and that reality becomes part of my being which I carry its existence with me as I move on to the next project.

FS: What makes a design successful?
SHJ: A design is successful only if the client affirms the designs and approves it once it is realized and understands its purpose the way it was created for.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
SHJ: Design appearance is important, but for me the most important factor is its practicality of use. There can be designs which designers can have built-in programs into the designs but realistically, clients don’t connect and can't use it in practice. I think the most important factor in judging a design is the sense of practicality that the designer and the user find mutual, in use of space, orientations, appearance, and more.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
SHJ: I think, one of the major responsibilities of a designer is to be able to prioritize local needs and cultural obligations of a specific region when it comes to utilizing modern design formats and styles. Each region has its own heritage and cultural predispositions came from the interactions and needs of those people from one another and their specific environment. So, when a designer decides to import new modern designing methods into the texture of each region, he should pay particular attention into not sacrificing nuance of modernistic approach in the expense of affecting that regions’ connection to its past. For example, my hometown was filled with so many monumental scenes and architectures that connected its present culture to ancient Persia. But, with new flood of modernistic designs, each neighborhood is shifting its historical identity to look more westernized by designers simply imitate western designing methods to increase their sales. Through this replacement, not only specific needs of each region are not being met, but also, their sense of belonging to their past identity is disappearing.

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
SHJ: I think, design field currently is deviated from the core concept for a design to connect people with their environment and their identity i.e. empower their sense of belonging to their surroundings. Currently I don’t see any design evolution from decades ago. New designs seem to be mostly directed with over exaggeration of early 2000 designing themes only more advanced due to integration of new technology into them, as opposed to the incorporation of new evolutionary designing concepts. I think this over exaggeration provides more disconnect between people and their neighborhood as opposed to comfort of feeling homed.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
SHJ: Holding architectural exhibitions is not popular in my hometown and thus, I haven’t held any exhibitions here. But, I am interested to be able to hold exhibitions internationally as I develop my designing portfolio internationally.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
SHJ: My education background and experiences prompt me identify potential deformities in a design. Then, I analyze what is the most efficient way to bridge the gap between these deformities and the needs of prospective users through the minimalistic, simplicity, energy sustainable, yet cost efficient lens.

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?
SHJ: Innovative touches that further highlights unique heritage of specific regions adapting to their needs

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?
SHJ: I live In Esfahan Iran. Yes, one of the main derivatives of my culture is simplicity and yet elegance in a design.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
SHJ: It depends from design to design and what are the major variable of a design and the needs that the design should fulfill. Sometimes, I start from details and draw up to the overall concept, sometimes from top down process. But, it certainly always starts with sketching a design on a paper by hand and developing major foundations from there.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
SHJ: To draw their design ideas fearlessly even if their design doesn’t get the adequate attention. To live with their designs like it is part of their being and blew life into each by living through each design as they proceed through the development process of a design. And also to branch out in between ideas through imagination and visualization trying to create interdisciplinary approach for each design.

FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
SHJ: The spectrum of Liberating imagination in visualizing a mental image for a design concept on one end to limitations and barriers regulated by municipalities filtering those raw liberating imaginations on the other end is the most positive to most negative attributes for a designer. Now the closer a manifested design is to one end, the more positive or negative impact it has how a designer’s presence may feel like.

FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
SHJ: Simplicity or minimalistic approach founded on practicality

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
SHJ: I think the most important skill for a designer is the ability to manifest its imagination ability onto a paper or onto a reality that can be presented and connect with.

FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
SHJ: Sketchup, AutoCAD, Photoshop, and Lumion.

FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
SHJ: It is very hard especially because I have two little babies and sometimes I just stay awake for 2 days until I complete a project, but recently, I am trying to divide a project into smaller step by step tasks that can be completed day by day gradually.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
SHJ: It depends on each project, its complexity and its details.

FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
SHJ: Most common question is, how much does it cost for a design project.

FS: What was your most important job experience?
SHJ: My most important job experience was Rouzan Residential Building because I had to also act as the project manager to supervise material selections, interior and exterior design execution, as well as infrastructural design conducts to be sure that there is a harmony between them all.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
SHJ: My favourite type of design is villa design

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
SHJ: My best partner and teammate is my wife who always gives me helpful advices and points out some of the blind spots in my designs.

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
SHJ: I always wanted to work on a Villa design and fortunately currently I am in the middle of a villa design which upon completion you can see the finalized project in my company’s Instagram.

FS: How can people contact you?
SHJ: They can contact me through my Instagram or my website. i.http://charchoob-arch.com/ ii.https://www.instagram.com/charchoob_architecture_office/


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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