The Design Process

Here at Mindsparkz we always get asked what is the process of designing a product. You may even be thinking that now. So for the next few blog posts we'd like to show you some of our processes to creating a final product that the world will buy.

The Shipping Container Samples

At Mindsparkz we begin by sketching our ideas. No matter how unrefined we throw them all at a brainstorming board or sketching session. At this stage all ideas are good ideas. We then take the most viable options and further develop.

This maybe be by further sketching the product, working out sizes and positions..... but most importantly it's about prototyping and sampling. Once we have a rough idea and some good drawings, a prototype or sample is the next step.  For instance we recently made a Flat pack to 3D shipping container. We prototyped to life out of this project, creating it in balsa wood, EVA foam board and more trying to get the correct product for the market, paying attention to the small detail which make the product as true to the actual item as it can be.

Sampling is also highly important because it means you get to see your product in real life for the first time, although sometimes you don't necessarily get what your hoping for.

(The products seen are complete and available. Fully customizable to your needs.
 Please enquire at info@theodmgroup.com)

(All images here are of Mindsparkz ROUGH samples. Designs are copyright)



Graphic Challenge

Throughout the world graphic designers are making millions by creating amazing, spectacular pieces of computer art. Having a graphics team at Mindsparkz we fully understand the challenges and the efficiency of this, but it recent times hugely complicated 'so much to look at' graphic art has been surpassed by simple Chinese graphics. WHY?


Chinese graphics are increasing in popularity and it's easy to see why. Their simple design that both feeds the eye but is gentle enough to not strain them is something to be marvelled at. Older styles are very reminiscent of the 20th century however aren't old and tired, but still refreshing and fun.

Compared to western design they have very little colours, perhaps just two or three and portray a quiet, non-intrusive vibe.



















They are becoming so popular but remaining subtle that you probably have one less than 10 meters from you right now.

For instance in the highly competitive drinks market, designing the graphics for bottle print (for coca-cola) is a huge competition how ever instead of loud arrogant western graphics, coca-cola several times has chosen Chinese graphics. 

See what we mean now? It's so simple yet you want to pick up the bottle, twirl it and follow the lines. No matter how much you look at it, it's not boring, stressful to look at or obnoxious.

The Chinese use this style for a lot of things. In fact they still use this style even on modern movie posters. Why fix something that's not broken, Right?


So for any of you graphic designers or in fact designers in general, if you're struggling to design graphic material, look east. There is a lot of inspiration over here and we are more than happy to share it.

THE CHRISTMAS CHARM

China is the biggest exporter of Christmas decoration and related products and because of this and the ever updating technology bringing us all closer, 'Chinese Christmas' has become a theme and is becoming more popular every year.

In December, Christmas decorations can be found all over in China, with large trees in shopping plazas, hotels and in other public places. Santa and his reindeer, snowmen, decorated shop windows, tinsel and reminders of Christmas can be found everywhere in the city. 

Although not they don't fully decorate for Christmas like the west does, many Chinese Christians buy Christmas trees, sometimes referred to as the “tree of light”.  Their traditional values are seen throughout their decoration as Chinese homes are decorated with evergreens and the “tree of light” with ornaments representative of Chinese culture, such as colourful paper chains, lucky cookies, Buddha’s.

It's nice that the world is becoming every closer and sharing values, but it's a;so nice to see a bit of stubborn when it comes to traditional design. Who knows maybe Chinese Christmas may influence the western Christmas just as much as. 

We admire the amount of detail put into these ones

To The West" Merry Christmas, From China

We've previously looked at design China has for itself and design it uses on a daily basis. But seeing as it's almost Christmas in the West it's also a good idea to look at what popular items China is exporting to the west for Christmas this year.

2014 has seen many changes in design and fashions. The main theme being minimalism. The West has been captivated by minimalism and especially the 2D to 3D products. A great example is table decorations.





(FYI - Mindsparkz have a range of unique and interesting 2D to 3D products)

From 2D to 3D Christmas trees to Boxes for table items such as tea bags, it seems the west its wanting that home made feeling this year, but with less of the crafts type and more of the quick assembly 'oh wow, that looks good' type.

Keeping on the track of home made style, many westerns have become obsessed with themed cello tape in order to create those movie style presents.

What was once a thing that never crossed your mind is now a huge craze with hundreds of designs ranging from snowflakes, candy canes to winter scarves.

So it clearly shows that in Christmas 2014 and perhaps 2015, simplicity and minimalism are the key to a fashionable Christmas. 



(Did you know Mindsparkz have previously designed flat pack products Enquire on our website www.mindsparkz.com or call +86 0756 6812218)


Packaging with a BANG

Ask anyone what a China is well known for they will always say firecrackers or fireworks. It is well know China produces fireworks by the millions from small firecrackers to larger city display sized ones.

Focussing on the small firecrackers, one of the main appeals of them is that they are beautifully packaged and designed. For something that will explode in a matter of seconds they put a serious amount of effort into it.

Typically always red the packaging always has important, meaning full themes. It is sometimes even possible for a family to have their own packaged fireworks with their moto, or name to celebrate their family or to remember loved ones.



They have become a statement of traditional china. As packaging inspiration they are a great place to start if you want to create a statement product. 

Creating you perfect packaging can be difficult as its mostly based on opinions. Some customers may not like what others like, however this may work to your advantage. Over in the west they have a food stuff called Marmite. Their slogan is 'you either love it or hate it because it has a very controversial taste. They apply this slogan to their packaging also. Using grotesque and obnoxious colourings to get your attention.
All in all it's pretty clear that sometimes, to make your product packaging stand out, sometimes you have to be brave and loud. Whether it be a bold red colour or something that people hate so much its popular. 


(Did you also know Mindsparkz design product packaging, 
Enquire on our website today www.mindsparkz.com or call +86 0756 6812218)


MINDSPARKZ GOES TO THE SHENZHEN DESIGN FAIR

China (Shenzhen) International Industrial Design Fair is a modern design trade exhibition presenting the latest product, technologies, materials, services for industrial designers, branding manufacturers, retailers and of course us here at Mindsparkz. 

The show consisted of some 25 countries top designers and their work and we were very excited to go and even more excited to show you some of the pieces we found particularly interesting.

Masayuki Kurokawa’s 


Karim Rashid

Karim Rashid design famous democratic sense, he worked for many international brands to design a brand new product, from UMBRA to PRADA, from ISSEY MIYAKE to METHOD, his style changed the nature of different aesthetic and cultural consumer product design.


Øivind Alexander Slaatto Bang & Olufsen










Design studio Maria Berntsen







This design fair didn't just have standard product design , it also had some smart wearable products on show. Such as Misfit smart products.


Misfit

Misfit is focused on developing great wearable products: things that people would want to wear all the time for a long time. Misfit Shine is an elegant physical activity monitor that you can wear anywhere on your body and to any occasion. Set your personal activity goals on the Shine app and then wear Shine anywhere on your body. Tap Shine and a halo of lights appears through the metal shell to show your progress toward your daily goal.




At Mindsparkz we always look around at modern, new design. Every little bit of inspiration helps when it comes to designing products. This rare treat of being able to go to a design fair is vitally important. It's similar in the sense of charging a designers battery

Old school design is cool school design

As a Chinese national I fully understand the ideation that Chinese people like relationships and being together. This is replicated within our furniture too. Like a loving couple, the Mortise and Tenon joint hugs forming an immensely strong joint. The technique has been used for hundreds of years but unfortunately the has suffered greatly when mass production methods came along but it is still going strong in today’s handmade modern furniture.  


Through the years many adaptations have came along, redesigning and improving the traditional join. Some ‘newer’ joint takes the same idea but allow it to be portrayed on the outside of the joint. For example the dovetail joint adds a large amount of detail and class to the furniture without compromising the strength.


Because the joint designs have evolved over the years it mean that they are becoming popular again and that mass production is taking a back seat as more and more people are wanting quality, beautiful pieces for their homes.

Evolved joints produce beautiful furniture
some even allow for surprising features
Simplicity

Building inspired the joints
the whole building uses a joint inspired by Tenson and Mortor
They even leave the skeleton of the building on show