In anticipation of Device Design Day 2011, we've partnered with Kicker Studio to bring you a series where speakers from this year's conference reflect on six questions about design and their practice. D3 brings together visual, interaction and industrial designers for a multi-disciplinary conversation about the design of consumer electronics and objects with embedded technology.
We're excited about kicking off the Six Questions series with Core77 friend and Design Awards jury captain for Specultaive Objects, Branko Lukic. Branko Lukic is founder and Principal of NONOBJECT Studio. He is an entrepreneur and master of new experiences, and author of NONOBJECT, a design and innovation book that explores the future of product experiences.
Read on to find out a little more about why Lukic loves spaghetti and violins, and the importance of your "inner Google."
Kicker Studio: What is the most cherished product in your life? Why?
Branko Lukic: Actually I don't have a particular most cherished product—I like too many and for different reasons. I like a range of products, from the tangible to the intangible, with a particular appreciation for movies and video games.
What's the one product you wish you'd designed, and why?
That product is still to come. But if you asked me which products I wish I had designed in the past, I'd name two:
The violin - It is perfect, it has no expiration date and it brings light to peoples' souls. It is pure emotion, it requires ages until one can perfect it and it enables a spiritual journey.
Spaghetti - It is amazingly simple, infinitely customizable, a complete UX solution and an ultimate DIY platform. And it exists on all levels of economy, from the most affordable meal all the way up to the highest-end cuisine.
What excites you about being a designer? Why do you keep doing it?
My goals are to make this tangible and intangible world a better place, and to make peoples' lives more comfortable, delightful and meaningful.
When do you first remember thinking of yourself as a designer?
I sketched from a very early age. Also, my parents told me the first thing I'd do was break all my toys to see what was inside, and then rebuild them into toys I thought were more interesting. Since then, I've been into the future—and design—without knowing that design actually existed. I found myself constantly thinking of a better world than the one I lived in at the time; that world was not so easy. I had a tiny Lego set and a few small cars. At that time in Serbia, people did not have an abundance of material things, only what they needed to live, basic stuff. Then something interesting happened. When I was 15, someone introduced me to the term "design" and the profession of design—I was amazed that something like that actually existed. We were lucky that in Serbia (then Yugoslavia), there was a High School for Industrial Design—literally a specialized high school for the study of design. Quite advanced for the time, although the school itself was very analog in its nature: hands-on, prototyping, building stuff, romantic, and charming. It was very hard to get into this school due to the limited number of seats available, and there was only one class per design discipline. I worked super hard to prepare for the exam for this specialized high school...and I got in.
What's the most important lesson you've learned, and who taught it to you?
My father taught me one of the most important lessons: whatever you choose to do in life, make sure you love what you do. He never forced us to become lawyers, doctors, engineers, scientists, musicians—he wanted us to be happy and do what we believe in and have a passion for.
What are 5 things all designers should know?
1. Work hard on your skills, understanding your inner purpose
2. Be honest to yourself, your colleagues, and your clients
3. Always be helpful and listen more than you talk
4. Don't take things too seriously
5. Browse your inner Google to find answers; then browse the actual web to see if someone has already done it.
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