An alternative by Jeremy Walton, 2006. Product downloads as craft ebooks.
DesignYouMake is about people-led design, it is about involving people in design. It positions design as knowledge rather than an object and craftsmanship as something to be appreciated not judged. I design objects or ways to make things so people can enjoy the pleasure of making. I move a step closer to Folk Art and Hobby Art thinking. I am exploring the potential to sell this in the form of ebooks as a serious alternative to transporting pre made objects. The first craft ebook will be launched at the SE 2007 Autumn exhibition and will focus on using milk cartons as a cheap material source.
Checkout the progress of the ideology at DesignYouMake.com
Design is knowledge, craftsmanship is a state of mind.
You can download design and make-it-yourself. No packing or transport. You can be part of the ever growing Peoples Museum of Design. The digital download may even become part of the object or be used physically as a tool, helping to construct the object. The design is based on the abilities and resources of the maker, in this case the people. For you to make my objects, you wont need high incomes but you will need the luxury of time. The question is, do you have this luxury? As a designer I develop the object, keeping in mind the abilities and resources of the maker (the people). People can make things at home, it is an almost forgotten art. My job is to do all the working-out and then communicate this working-out, in a simple and effective way, in the form of a digital download.
Even myself, someone that is creative, can’t manage to make all the things I think I might have a go at making. The reason for this is because, I just don’t have enough time to work out the solution, the working-out bit at the beginning that holds up the end, the pencil chewing, the scratching your head part. Plus my children are not too patient when it comes to watching daddy scratching his head while trying to work-out the best way to make a toy castle. Plus, when I do manage to make something, I only work-out how it could have been done better, first after I have done it.
People can make things, it has been done in the past.
Inspired by the likes of Victor Papanek, my fathers do-it-yourself manuals and the charm of hand made objects, that were once created in garden sheds by grandfathers. I ask myself, what if design is regarded as knowledge that can be transported digitally and then crafted by people themselves? Having always been interested in involving people and reflecting society within my design, the idea of considering design as knowledge that people use to create an object themselves, has come as a natural progression and an interesting challenge.
Who in their right mind will find this interesting?
People that appreciate design but don’t wish to spend half their income on buying it. People that have the luxury of time. People that are trying to give up smoking and need something to do with their hands. People that have a conscience about material waste, energy waste and the sustainability of the environment, People that were looking for something else, but found this site, People that are bored of just reading about design in glossy magazines, Materialists that feel bad about being materialistic, Parents that would like to show their children that they can make things, Grandparents that are not busy polluting the skies and the child in all of us.
Who won’t find it interesting?
The industry that taught me everything I know about working for free.
Why they might have the wrong idea.
The more people understand about materials and the work that goes into making things, the better they will appreciate other quality products. Thus the more likely they are to wish to save up and invest in objects that are well designed and skilfully crafted. That’s my theory.
The background to DesignYouMake.
In 2006 I was at a crossroads with my own range of products. Do I invest in becoming a business or do I step aside and focus on my creative ideas.
As a designer maker I found that too much of my time was spent dealing with sales, packaging and distribution. Less and less time and resources were available for new ideas. Customers were paying more for the transport, than for the items themselves.
I offer creative solutions, so I had to look at my own situation and make some decisions. My heart is in creativity and I know for sure it would not be a good idea for me to try and compete with the growing number of good design brands set up by people that are as passionate about business as I am about being creative.