Monday, October 12, 2009

Week three straggler.

When I see clean, simple designs, I melt. If you can get your point across in 5 seconds, then you’re doing something right. I personally don’t want to have to spend too much time figuring out what to do with something, or what your design means. Give me convenience or give me death.

I wish I saw more simple industrial designs. I’ve come across conceptual ideas that make my heart pound, but I rarely happen upon something that is real and available. Oh yeah, and I can’t forget package design. Don’t give me all that shrink-wrap. A beautifully designed un-dyed box will do just fine.

Maybe it’s the designer in me, but who will tell me that they aren’t intrigued and compelled by this: [Go Here] Seriously, that is up-cycling. And think about how simple that box is.

Why can’t everything be like that? Does everything we buy need to have only one specific use? Can’t we re-define our surroundings? Better yet, can’t we create surroundings that are multi-use, “eco-friendly”, lasting, and beautiful? Is that too much to ask? It’s really a matter of simplicity.

In this day and age, everyone is so focused on cheap, easy to make, convenient items. Convenience (by this I mean ease of use and availability, among other attributes) and low-quality don’t have to go hand in hand. There’s no reason that good, simple design should sacrifice convenience. In fact, it should complement and emphasize it. And is it really “cheaper” to continually buy plastic plates instead of re-usable ceramic ones? Maybe for a while, but that’s only taking your wallet into effect. What about the cost on the environment? What about the cost on your body and your health? I would rather spend more money on something that I knew was going to last longer. Objects should be made to last. They should get passed down from generation to generation and stay strong.

In short, I’m trying to understand what’s changed in the world. Why are simple, effective designs harder and harder to come by? Why do products need to be so specialized, so fancy? Why do they need to be made with so many materials? Pots and pans are simple items that are continually becoming more and more complex. Is it just a matter of convenience, or something more? Let’s simplify the objects we use. But seriously, I love convenience too so let’s not get rid of that.


  1. speaking of recycling...

  2. I like the concept of the shipping container houses and the beer bottles, why are all bottles and cans cylinder shaped anyways, may because it's easier to grasp? It seems to me that packing materials would greatly decrease if pop; water, milk, oj, and almost all liquids containers were box shaped instead of cylinder. The second part I like about the bottles was that the designer had planned out the life of the bottle. He focused not only the best way to transport beer, but what can the bottle be used for after consumption of the beer. This is where the beer bottles differ from the containers; the containers were designed for one purpose then used for a second. We should be able to design a banner for the TNC that once they are finished with it, it becomes a doormat, or a table cloth, or cut and used as a cover for their magazine or book covers. I just brainstorming but if a bottle can be designed to become a wall, and then maybe a computer screen could become the wall "paper".

  3. Liz,
    I completely agree with you about the beauty of simplicity. I like simple, clean, straight-forward designs. I don't need all the other unnecessary nonsense... in fact it just causes you to be distracted and makes it difficult to appreciate the design. I too enjoy conveniency in the products I use. However, I believe that now people use convenience and laziness interchangeably, which is completely inaccurate. I do not need everything to be done for me by devices. Basically, make it simple and easy but not brainless.

    by the way, I really like that website posted Sarah.. really cool!