ADDRESS Interview with Richard Jarvis.
Define your craft in 3 sentences or less. I design and construct unique furniture pieces with a focus on chairs, in a style that is contemporary but with clear kinship to the great designers from the mid 20th century. Crafted using traditional techniques where feasible and modern methods where sensible, employing the best available selected woods, fabrics and leathers.
Describe your creative process. I design furniture to be useful and visually beautiful with a graceful tactility, warmth and an open invitation to sit, touch and enjoy. Aesthetics are important but no more so than ergonomics. Every chair, table or other item is designed to be comfortable, a place where you will want to spend time. The process always starts with a simple line sketch quickly thrown onto a page. Sometimes it’s nothing more than a curved line and sometimes the line strikes a chord, just evokes a feeling. This feeling then becomes the basis for a more fully developed design.
Where do you find inspiration when experiencing a creative block? I dig back into my sketch books to see if any undeveloped ideas or concepts have matured in the time since they were first laid out on paper. If I’m still not feeling it, I put away the pencils for another day, it can’t be forced. Typically the design process is trying to answer a question and with a change of focus, the question will reframe in my mind and a new approach will present itself.
What advice would you give to young designers / makers / artists / creatives aspiring to make it in their field? Persevere, find your language and stick with it. Enjoy the process and make what makes you tick – be true to yourself.
What’s your dream project? The dream project is really about the dream client; that person that feels what I feel and that connects at an emotional level with what I have created. The dream is not about project scope but about the commonality of a shared language.
What art / design trends are you excited about? There seems to be a growing interest in design in general, spurred on by the penetration of design in social media, blogs and design venues. I believe that this engenders a heightened awareness that the things we live with in every aspect of our lives begins with the creative people responsible for them.