Summer has officially begun here on Bainbridge! We are excited to welcome the season with two new interns: Rosrena Wong (above) and Katherine Zhang (below). Both hail from Vancouver B.C. and are students at the Rhode Island School of Design. To learn more about this Canadian duo, below is a Q & A that they put together this morning.
So I see that we’re both from Rhode Island School of Design, what field of design are you currently studying?
R: I’m studying Industrial Design, and I like the versatility, room for creative exploration, and everyday problem-solving aspect of ID. I like the hands-on process of the ID programme at RISD as it gives a broader and holistic understanding of product design.
K: I’m studying furniture design and so far it’s been everything I’ve expected and so much more. The professors and my fellow classmates are so dedicated and offer such a wealth of knowledge and good humour that the overall environment is just really energized, which is really lucky because I kind of chose furniture off of a whim.
Name one object that is at the top of your current to-buy list.
R: Muji bluetooth speakers because the design is simple, nice, and it works.
K: I’m really not a materialistic person, which is absurd as I design objects, but if I could buy any object, it would be this Burton Lyric snowboard which features a sunset. I made the mistake of letting my mum choose my first snowboard.
Where do you find most of your inspiration?
R: Most of my design inspirations spark from everyday experiences, social encounters, places I’ve been to, and small delightful moments of life. My home, Vancouver, is also a big part of my inspiration.
Of course, like everybody else, I read and check out a lot of new designs from social media outlets such as Instagram, Tumblr, Design Milk, and Core77... things like that. Very occasionally, I will see a design I like and be inspired by it that way.
K: I’ve realized that I am most drawn to my memories and small details - particularly those found in nature such as footprints on a snowy path or clouds in the sky. When I am most lost for inspiration, I always intuitively refer to the scenic landscapes of my hometown of Vancouver.
Do you travel a lot? If so where is your favourite travel destination? And where do you want to go?
R: Not now, but usually as much as possible. Up til now, my favourite spot has been Italy. I really like Venice because it’s very quaint and charming. I also really like Switzerland because it feels a lot like my home (Vancouver). Up next I really want to go to Scandinavia, particularly Copenhagen and Stockholm, because of my love and admiration for Danish design.
K: Yes, I try to as much as possible. My top four favourites thus far are Barcelona, Shanghai, London, and Rome. I instantly loved the vibrancy of Barcelona, especially the openness of the people and the Gaudi architecture spread throughout the old city. I’m also a huge FC Barcelona fan. My parents are from Shanghai and I love watching how much it has grown over the years. London feels like you’re in the centre of the world and Rome is literally everything I love in one city! I desperately want to be in Brazil this summer for the World Cup, but if I had to miss it, I’m glad it’s because of Grain and Bainbridge Island.
Currently liking any work of any creative people?
R: Oh there are just too many! I’m really drawn to minimal and simple designs that have smart features. In terms of classical art, one of my favourite painters is Sargent and I particularly like his paintings of Venice.
K: Classically, I really admire the noses of Rembrandt’s self portraits, the early Californian beach house paintings by David Hockney, but my current favourite paintings are those of J.M.W Turner. I really want to see the new Mr. Turner film!
What is your favourite read for now?
R: My all time favourite is The Little Prince and my childhood favourite was House Moving Castle Series. I loved The Little Prince instantly!
K: I am such an avid reader that this is an impossible question but I typically refer to books by Nick Hornby, in particular Slam and About A Boy (I also really love the movie)!
Any interesting life stories?
R: Well, this is the one story that I always tell people, and I’m going to say it again because I surprised myself. There was this one time when I ate seven McDonald’s cheeseburgers in a row because I was just starving!
K: When I went to Spain and Portugal in the summer of 2010, I bought a Brazilet bracelet which is a Brazilian wish bracelet. The myth is that if you make a wish and tie three knots your wish will come true when your Brazilet naturally falls off. I obviously wished to go to RISD and after deciding to defer my acceptance in 2011 due to health issues, I went in 2012. On the day of departure, September 7th, 2012, my Brazilet ripped off which was just too flukey.