Saturday, June 14, 2008

Design Fun - Seeing Things From Your Own Point of View

Concept Car - BMW-GINA

The other day I got a YouTube link to a concept car BMW-GINA from my brother. I thought it was pretty cool, but since I don't have my speakers hooked up to my computer we only got the visual. I jokingly suggested he had a new girl friend, GINA, (boys and their toys) and told him I had a new boyfriend WALL-E. He didn't get my joke. Too my surprise I discovered that he had developed an attitude about the Pixar films from seeing so many with his kids. He was like 'enough already with the same story set'. I had a much simpler view of the films, never really paying much attention to anything other than their entertainment value. I had been watching NEMO on broadcast, since that is all we have, last Friday night, when I saw the clip of WALL-E. As usual I am always busy with dogs and dinner and just not thinking that hard about it all. To me, WALL-E was like a new puppy, kinda cute. The truth is I already have too many dogs, so I don't see one in my near term future and my brother probably doesn't see GINA in his future either, not with 3 kids still to attend college ahead.

We bantered back and forth a little and he went on to say:

"I just thought that the car concept was cool because it is unique from a design perspective. Chris Bangle has been a very controversial design head at BMW because of his ‘edge’ styling theme. Many car people hate the sharp edges and lines of recent BMW’s and it struck me that he is the only guy that could do this concept. You could never stretch fabric over an exo-skeleton and create a smooth rounded surface, like most of today's cars."

I didn't tell him, but I said 'huh?' to myself. Guess he thinks I know more about cars than I do. This whole conversation reminds me that everyone is looking at things from their own perspective and just how that complicates communication, particularly via email.

Then I was talking to a friend who has an online magazine, and she was talking about a client who wanted to put paisley in the background of an ad and she couldn't understand why; since my friend was thinking that paisley was passe. I suggested that she get a grip about always being more knowledgeable than her clients about design, since it's what she is focused on. Working with design clients always has an education element, and it isn't likely that you will bring them along all the way to the level you are at. Besides, it takes time, usually not in the project budget, and then they are always looking at things from their own point of view anyway.

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