During my 2 day creative spree at last weekend’s 2011 Design Indaba Expo I, as I’m sure you did too, stumbled upon many a beautiful object that inspired me in some way. On my way out I caught something last minute which really interested me.. Raymond Masara, a 2011 emerging creative with a serious case of understated talent and potential. I caught up with Raymond and got to know him and his work a little better, here’s what he had to say..
LA: Tell us a bit about yourself in terms of your profession and what you do
RM: If I had to call myself something, it would be a furniture designer. I design and build my own chairs, tables and design lounge interiors for which I sometimes arrange the lighting.
LA: When approaching personal works, what materials do you enjoy using?
RM: My favorite material is steel, especially steel-rods which I try to use in a completely unique way. Its all about doing things a little differently for me, using materials in ways that haven’t been done before.
LA: What project/designs are you currently working on?
RM: As with these pieces im exhibiting here, I am also working on a garden furniture suite.
LA: Tell me about your favorite part of the design process ?
RM: For me its all about the process. When I receive a brief, I don’t jump straight in, but rather I take time to visualize what it is im going to do, then I do it. Its the passion of the work, and the satisfaction that comes when I see people using my furniture.
LA: When approaching new work, where and how do you find inspiration for creation?
RM: My source is nature. Having grown up in villages that always had a forest of some sort, I drew inspiration from the surroundings and applied them in my works. I like the idea of ‘collaborating with nature’
LA: Where would you place your work within the realm of a work of art Vs. a product?
RM: Sometimes this line can be very fine, but I try to forget about this and just do things as I am best able to. The process that I went through creating these chairs was a very personal one with every thing being done meticulously by hand. In other words im spending allot of time on each piece so I guess that you could say it is art in some way.
LA: Roughly how long does it take you to make one of these?
RM: I took about 3 to 4 full days each
LA: If you could give some advice to other designers following a similar path as you, what would it be?
RM: For me its a simple answer, If your doing something your passionate about, things will go your way. No matter how hard you work, if its in the wrong direction, your heart wont be in it. Do what your passionate about.
I really hope Raymond continues to develop his personal style and gets the kind of exposure all hardworking creatives deserve! On that note, what is your definition of a ‘creative’ ?