Thanks to our clients and suppliers for arousing our curiosity. We are also particularly grateful to all of our collaborators who made DhemenBook#0 and all of the later issues possible.
Mum, where do ideas come from?
Dhemen’s firepower lies in its ability to offer fresh design solutions.
Paradoxically, the strength of Dhemen stems from its small size. Because of the limited number of people and the high rate of projects being developed, every designer gets to know very different kinds of business sectors, such as furniture design, electronics, helmet design and many more. This produces a general design knowledge that allows great cross-fertilisation of ideas. That means that design solutions from one kind of product can sometimes be applied to products that seem completely unrelated. At our studio, it is very common for several designers to work together on the same project. Every designer at Dhemen has a different design background, and can share his own approach and solutions to a problem.
Nonetheless, we also use other techniques to generate ideas. Igor chooses different methods depending on the type of project and the degree of innovation required. Our favourite method is brainstorming, which works as follows: All of the designers and engineers gather in the ‘zulo’. This is a room where all four walls are covered with blackboards, providing a huge drawing area so that sketches are not limited by space.
Whenever it seems appropriate, we invite people from outside the company to attend the meeting. They might be architecture students, computer technicians or simply random people who happen to be in the neighbourhood. The team members all pace around the room. We soak up just the information necessary to develop a general idea of what the project is about. In this case, “to know less is to know more”, since knowing too much about the technicalities of the product can hinder creativity. We start chatting away and quickly scribble ideas on the walls. One person tries to guide to flow to maximise output. The most important thing is to maintain and stimulate the flux. That’s why every idea is a valid one, even those that seem ridiculous at first. It is well known that when people work in a group, ideas generate new ideas. If the group dynamics are right, the members inspire each other and a creative hurricane sets in. It only lasts 30 to 60 minutes at the most, so it is essential to get the maximum benefit.