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Interview with Mohamed Selim El Kady

Home > Designer Interviews > Mohamed Selim El Kady

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Mohamed Selim El Kady (MSEK) for A’ Design Award and Competition. You can access the full profile of Mohamed Selim El Kady by clicking here.

Interview with Mohamed Selim El Kady at Sunday 15th of May 2022
Mohamed Selim
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?
MSEK: As long as I remember myself - I was drawing all the time and I was learning Arabic calligraphy from my early days, then I joined the Faculty of Applied Arts - Helwan University and here I discovered myself more when I joined the Department of Sculpture and Architectural Formation and my intense love for sculpture, from here I realized that I would become a designer.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
MSEK: I am the creative director and founder of the studio. It was established in 2011. I had my own vision of art, design and visual culture. Over time, I developed myself and had my own style of design. As a result, I can easily say that my designs align perfectly with my vision of design in general.

FS: What is "design" for you?
MSEK: For me, design is one of the most interesting approaches, design is present in all areas of our lives, we are born and die in design. It is present in everything around us, as it acts as a means to change the image of the world as well as the arrangement of its structure, and also to make our lives more beautiful and easier.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
MSEK: My favorite projects together are people who have an idea and a concept. When the project is based on a good and positive idea, working on such a project is very interesting and relaxing. Ideas appear one by one and this brings me real satisfaction.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
MSEK: My favorite design for lighting units is (Aton). This topic was covered by a countless number of designs, until a group of lighting units and accessories was produced, using different natural and completely Egyptian raw materials.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
MSEK: My first job was to organize a party for Allianz company in Salah El-Din Citadel - Cairo - Egypt. It was a fairly easy task, and I was responsible for all the decoration works and the implementation of the agreed works successfully.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
MSEK: I don't have a favorite material or technique, as each project requires its own means of expressing it. Contrast stimulates the development of design and artistic thinking, helps to develop in different directions.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
MSEK: : I feel a burst of creativity when I come up with a vivid idea, a wave that helps push design to a new level. This only happens in the process of a prolonged search for expression. Because the first stage of any project is spent on trivial cliched solutions, it is very important not to stop and move on. The moment I find something real and valuable is the moment when I feel the strongest impulse of creativity.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
MSEK: When it comes to design, I pay close attention to the aesthetics of public art, it still has to be aesthetically thought out and symmetrical. There is another aspect that pays a lot of attention - the details. The way the smallest elements of drawing and carving are executed When all these little details are carefully executed and combined into a single project, the resulting design gets a whole new look.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
MSEK: When I create a design, I feel a wide range of feelings, different and sometimes contradictory feelings at the same time, from joy, fear, confusion and enthusiasm, especially in the first stage of the design to the state of contentment and stability in the last stage of the design.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
MSEK: An indescribable emotions when I see the result of my work being embodied in the real world. It is in moments like this that you feel creative, you have added your vision, and you have done something good and different

FS: What makes a design successful?
MSEK: Successful design consists of several factors. Where design cannot exist alone. Moreover, the design must take into account a large number of factors, which, in turn, will strongly affect the final result. For example: when creating the design of lighting units, the designer must take into account factors such as the psychology of human perception, marketing, promotional means and tools, available technologies for production, materials, manufacturing methods and their best, and many other factors.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
MSEK: When evaluating design, I do it according to several important criteria: Is it aesthetic first and functionality second? What feelings does it evoke in me? Is aesthetics in harmony and interaction between the different parts, elements and lines. If the design does not "catch me" it will not keep the consumer near the shelf. Emotion - the interaction between the design and the person looking at it, and the function - the design must be able to achieve what is required of it perfectly and safely at the same time.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
MSEK: I think the designer has a serious social responsibility by choosing this path. Design is not just about coordinating lines, colors and shapes, even if it is very important and can affect a person's feelings. Designers are largely responsible for this. The objects of our creativity surround people every day throughout their lives. And depending on how beautiful, ecological and convenient it is, the state of social disposition can be different. As the design has a major role in influencing the community and changing its concepts and behavior at times and advancing it

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
MSEK: Every year trends, style and trends change and the design industry is developing very rapidly, as new trends, solutions and concepts appear. It will evolve with human society, reaching new heights.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
MSEK: 2021, Cairo Design Award, The Ritz-Carlton, Cairo / Egypt I want my next exhibition in Dubai

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
MSEK: The main unlimited resource for me is lakes, rivers, and seas. nature. Plants and animals ...... and my influence on the ancient Egyptian civilization from architecture and carving symbols and stories that are different and very inspiring to me, all of this helps to experience inspiration.

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?
MSEK: My approach to design is to have a reason for everything. There is no place in my designs for unjustified solutions or redundant lines. The impact and meaning of those lines

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?
MSEK: I live in Cairo, Egypt. The cultural background of the country affects me a lot, because my roots go back to the south, and the south is characterized by the abundance of ancient Egyptian temples, and the ancient Egyptian civilization has a clear impact on my work

FS: How do you work with companies?
MSEK: When working with companies, I use the principle of "total immersion" in the client's business. I explore all the characteristics in the client's field of activity. There are usually several detailed briefing meetings. After the summary is approved, I start working on the project.

FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
MSEK: : For a company to hire a good designer, they must first study his portfolio closely. Check the client's feedback, how they think and what solutions they offer, how they solve problems and changes in design, and whether their vision of the design and work process matches their own.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
MSEK: My process of creating the design begins with careful preparation. It is the analysis of a large amount of information related to the topic of the project. I search for solutions that have already been implemented by other designers, and after that my design process begins

FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
MSEK: At home I have different collections of trees, I like to look at them, there are different collections of sculptures by a contemporary artist and I always feel satisfied with their different lines, shapes and compositions. I also have some sculptures from my own work that evoke a sense of blissful serenity.

FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
MSEK: Every day is not like the day before - every day has its missions and goals. There are days when I want to take a break and do nothing. But there are also many productive and intense days.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
MSEK: Enjoy life and nature around you and always enjoy your sight of them. This will allow me to continuously improve to reach new heights and outperform yourselves.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
MSEK: It is very important for the designer to have the ability to analyze what he sees and categorize it in terms of the quality of the design, what are the alternative solutions to make it better, and it is also important to be able to draw and develop artistic skills. As a result, all this allows to push the designer's special abilities to good levels.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
MSEK: What kind of design projects do you love to work on?

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
MSEK: My main plan for the future is to expand in the field of designing lighting units and accessories. as much as I can. I participate in the global development of design and be an active part of that process.

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
MSEK: So far I am developing my designs myself

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
MSEK: I have another job, which is teaching at the faculty of Applied Arts.


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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