Aside

Its 2:44 pm on a Saturday and I still have not made a decision between the two. Ideally, I should have a clear direction by now and I should be on my way to purchase the right sets of rivets and screws to be used. But speaking to three or four of my friends about my two concepts, have really made me take a step back to consider some issues I have never thought of before.

One even suggested that I list as many cons as I can think of for each one and pick the one with less when I have finished. She has also shed light on some issues that I have never considered, such as:

  1. Coat racks – which may not be used as much as the table lamp would. The visitors may not bring as many coats. Many if not all would only bring one if none at all. Whereas, any sort of extra lighting in an apartment will be used more often, as ‘there is never really enough light in an apartment’.
  2. In the winter, people may bring in wet raincoats. She then asked me ‘How my coat rack will cater for that?’ The conversation became lengthy as talks about adding some sort of drainage system came about. At once, I thought of creating an asymmetrical ridge that goes right across the middle of the structure, where the water will be caught and be led down into a bucket. Immediately, I thought a bucket does not sound appealing. It will be a visual disruption affecting the elegance that I am trying to achieve within my product. If a bucket is introduced, it will have to be masked or hidden. I then thought of introducing a water feature (to mask the bucket). After all, the water has to go somewhere. However, as soon as I thought about this addition, I reminded myself that over-complicating things is a deathbed in the making. You either succeed or fail miserably. Unfortunately, there is only but a thin line in between these extremes.
  3. She expressed, as many others had, that the table lamp is ‘pretty’, and I can make variations of it i.e. flowers in full bloom, flowers starting to bloom, and even flower buds. Though I am already aware of the variations I can make with this concept, I am also aware that this idea is very generic. Everyone does lighting nowadays. Any sort of variation is just incremental innovation. On the other hand, coming up with a creative coat rack might just get me somewhere.

I thought that by seeking out the opinions of others will help me inch myself closer to a definite direction. Though the conversations I had last night, or rather really early this morning, were tremendously helpful and had me leaning towards the coat rack idea, I still come back to question it. Why is that?

It is because at the very beginning of this project, I had determinedly set myself a goal, and that was to bring intimacy into the apartment; to add character to the place for it to be more welcoming. My very initial solution to that was no other than making a candle holder or introducing some sort of lighting feature. Amusingly, I have come to a full circle and staring me in the eye is no other than my very initial idea. Is it coincidental? Or have I really been thinking about this subconsciously throughout the entire divergent phase?

Nevertheless, I still am unsure about it all. If only there is a way to somehow make a hybrid of the two. My other friend had actually suggested this – to create a wall mounted coat rack that lights up. It is an idea but an idea that I frown heavily upon. Why? It counts as another perfect example under my spiel about over-complicating things.

However, I do wonder how I can achieve my goal to bring in intimacy through a wall mounted coat rack. And as I was racking my brain for exactly this, an idea presented itself to me during my conversation with the same girl who brought light to the issue of wet raincoats and clothes. What if I make the wall mounted coat rack a wall decor? Therefore when it is not in use, it can still be enjoyed by the temporary inhabitants of  the apartment.

Now, the question is: does it add intimacy? It certainly adds more character. But intimacy?

I am so fixed on this idea that only adding soft lighting can ever add intimacy. This sort of draws me back to what my lecturer has said on our very first critique or discussion, when I had said I wanted to introduce intimacy to the apartment via a candle holder made out of blinds. He had asked whether there is another way to add intimacy, apart from introducing a candle holder.

Maybe he had said this to get me to explore other ideas. Not maybe – actually. Of course, he had. And it had gotten me to explore other ideas. I had explored how to bring in ‘intimacy’ throughout the divergent phase.

Of course in order for me to explore how intimacy could be introduced into the apartment, I had to have a good understanding on what exactly I meant by ‘intimacy’. Well for starters, the dictionary definition of intimacy is having

  1. ‘a close familiarity to..’
  2. ‘a private cozy atmosphere..’

This is exactly what I mean. The apartment has a strong sense of anonymity (ie, its walls are bare), and it is this, that makes it slightly unwelcoming. These high profile guests are visitors of the university and would most likely be educators themselves. And as educators, their day’s worth of activities could consist of serious matters that regard their profession or excursions in and around the CBD. As their hosts, I would think that it is in our best interest to make them feel at home at all times.

One of the CBD attractions that they may visit during there stay is our Art precinct, which is in close proximity to our city campus. Since I aim to try out different compositions to make the coat rack a wall decor, it may be a good idea to pay the art precinct another visit in the near future for inspiration. Walks through Auckland Domain may be a good idea too, as the many sculptures that adorn the grounds of the Domain could serve as further inspiration.

By making the coat rack a wall decor as well, takes care of things listed under the ‘Weaknesses’

  1. It makes for a more striking piece, which adds character and therefore intimacy. The initial design of the concept was more cohesive with how the apartment looks. Dare I say, it blends  in with the dullness of it, comparable to a chameleon camouflaging into its surroundings. Creating more interesting compositions would definitely lift it up, though careful considerations should be made so that balance between ‘striking’ and ‘elegance’  is kept and not overturned.
  2. The initial design of the concept lacks reflection of any Auckland CBD attraction, thus taking inspiration from the art precinct of town would solve that problem.

Well isn’t it funny that through writing this post, I have actually made a decision. Wall mounted coat rack – it is.

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