Sika console table in rippled sycamore, Australian oak, and carbon fibre
I did a design degree ages ago, and decided when I finished that degree that maybe it wasn’t quite what I wanted to get into, it was really competitive. So I ended up taking a very different path and started working in research, in agencies in London for quite a few years, but lacked a sense of creativity through that. I visited a few different schools and this was the one that seemed the most creative, the more experimental, the most open to a range of materials. That really appealed to me because I didn’t want it to be a completely carpentry-type approach to furniture design, I wanted it to be a bit more forward looking than that. And that’s certainly what this place offers, I think Marc’s work shows that and the work of the students shows that.
I signed up for 12 weeks and I thought I wouldn’t get enough done in that time, so I pushed it to 20 weeks, and then halfway through that course I thought, I’m not going to get enough done in 20 weeks, so I went for the full year. If someone had told me in advance of the course that I would do a bunch of skills-based exercises and then 3 projects I would have said that doesn’t sound like much. I came into this thinking that everything would be much quicker, and in reality fitting those three projects into the year was quite a challenge.
The creativity element was really good, and I like the fact that there was a real emphasis on learning skills first. All the practice is not necessarily fun, but then when you’re in the middle of a project and you realise the most accurate way of doing something is to pick up a chisel and do it by hand, you appreciate that all the work you did before has brought you to that point, because you wouldn’t be able to do it otherwise.