What goes in to a design

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I used to run a Stained-Glass Business in Dunedin, for 11 years.
I attended the home show each year, and I got most of my work from the show.
I’m just going to run through the process of one of those jobs.

Design starts with a brief
Location Gillion and Sons, a new Funeral chapel.
Part of the gathering space once inside.
A 6-meter blank wall. Fill in the blank

I ask for more hints. “No, I don’t want to influence you in any way.”
What a challenge? OMG I’m out of my depth here. I can’t do this. This is serious.
The “guy” looked like Colonel Sanders

The constraints
This is going to be a lightbox not a window. There was a lot of rimu timber in the place in all the trim the ceiling.

The context
This was a tidy place, not ostentatious. Not trying to be anything else but comforting.
Death is here. What kind of thing is appropriate?

Images start flashing …a scene a lake. No someone may have drowned. Nature …seemed to dominate my thoughts. No matter the scene, I thought oh that’s going to remind them of.

Well guess what …they are thinking of the deceased person that’s why they are here so stop thinking about it.

Put the Constraints and context run it through the brain again.
I thought 6 meters in length. Five panels in a frame on a wall. Don’t want to see the lights. But how can you change the batons. A wooden box with rimu framing around the panels removable to allow access. A diffusion layer to diffuse the light. Ventilation even fluros get hot. Need a tidy carpenter. This gave me something to work with.

I have a canvas
I sat down and drew these 5 panels. 1 tenth scale. I got a ruler and randomly scribed lines on angles going horizontally and then some vertical lines on some angles. I then rubbed some out and then started making shapes between and through the panels. I drew some curves and some shapes that begun to look like buildings, hills and landscapes. What seemed to evolve was a kind of evocation of the place of Dunedin.

This design came out of the profound affection I had for Dunedin. It truly was a great place. When I arrived for the first time by train the vista was astounding. The place was full of people that were friendly and genuine. I was a stranger that had been welcomed by so many. I majored in kinetic sound sculpture. I was able to start a business. I was a founding member of an arts collective. I was singing in bands. I have a connection to this place.

Customer very little brief, a space with its limitations and rules, consideration to the place the purpose. All affect the design.
I apply this kind of methodology to all that I do.

I still get a sense of being part of the place. Part of me that is part of there.

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