LEGENDARY INTERVIEW

Design Legends ("DL") had the distinct honour to interview legendary designer Kang Shan ("KS") for their original perspective and innovative approach to design as well as their creative lifestyle, we are very pleased to share our interview with our distinguished readers.

DL: Could you please tell us a bit about your design background and education?

KS : I studied product design in Zhengzhou Light Industry University. Although this is a little-known Chinese university, there are good teachers here. They are responsible and pay attention to the education of everyone. This is also my greatest luck.

DL: What motivates you to design in general, why did you become a designer?

KS : I want to use my way - design to help people live a better life, let them realize the beauty of life, and let them know how to cherish and love nature.

DL: Did you choose to become a designer, or you were forced to become one?

KS : I like design, which makes me become a designer voluntarily.

DL: What do you design, what type of designs do you wish to design more of?

KS : Simple, practical, beautiful and fun design

DL: What should young designers do to become a design legend like you?

KS : Treat your work sincerely and break through oneself

DL: What distinguishes between a good designer and a great designer?

KS : “Good designers will learn from the advantages of others, and great designers will steal the advantages of others.”I agree with Jobs'remark.

DL: What makes a good design a really good design, how do you evaluate good design?

KS : Everyone has different criteria for judging good design. I think good design should not only help human beings, but also consider the environment.

DL: What is the value of good design? Why should everyone invest in good design?

KS : Good design can promote the development of man and nature and solve various problems in life. Good investment in design is the sustainable development of human civilization

DL: What would you design and who would you design for if you had the time?

KS : Yes, design and I are inseparable. I do design not only for the sake of interests, as long as I feel it, I will do it. Sometimes I design supplements for the disabled for free or a poster for people to pay attention to certain social problems, etc.

DL: What is the dream project you haven’t yet had time to realize?

KS : I don't know, the world is always changing day by day. As long as it is conducive to social progress, I will design what people need.

DL: What is your secret recipe of success in design, what is your secret ingredient?

KS : Never use ideals as a tool for making money and becoming famous. We should have a sense of social responsibility in designing

DL: Who are some other design masters and legends you get inspired from?

KS : That's too much. Tadao Ando, I. M. Pei, Naoto Shenzawa, Ichinawa, Picasso, Monet and so on. Design is not just a knowledge, you need to learn a variety of masters, they have been in their own field for a long time to achieve their own. Only standing on their shoulders can you go further.

DL: What are your favorite designs by other designers, why do you like them?

KS : That's too much. Tadao Ando, I. M. Pei, Naoto Shenzawa, Ichinawa, Picasso, Monet and so on. Design is not just a knowledge, you need to learn a variety of masters, they have been in their own field for a long time to achieve their own. Only standing on their shoulders can you go further.

DL: What is your greatest design, which aspects of that design makes you think it is great?

KS : Hangers designed for the disabled make me feel like I can do my best for others.

DL: How could people improve themselves to be better designers, what did you do?

KS : Learning, the times are progressing, only continuous learning can keep pace with the times

DL: If you hadn’t become a designer, what would you have done?

KS : A painter or sculptor, I love art

DL: How do you define design, what is design for you?

KS : Design can promote the development of man and nature and solve various problems in life.

DL: Who helped you to reach these heights, who was your biggest supporter?

KS : My father, an interior designer, is also my teacher and guide.

DL: What helped you to become a great designer?

KS : My Dream, Dream Designed for Human Beings

DL: What were the obstacles you faced before becoming a design master?

KS : The biggest obstacle I have encountered is that there is too little knowledge reserve, so I go to the library every day to study. For our ideals, we need to pay more.

DL: How do you think designers should present their work?

KS : Publish your work on your home page. On the one hand, you can record your life, on the other hand, you can disseminate your design.

DL: What’s your next design project, what should we expect from you in future?

KS : Next project. Maybe it's oil painting, haha. I want people to love life and design comes from life.

DL: What’s your ultimate goal as a designer?

KS : Even after my death, my work can always help mankind, even after my death.

DL: What people expect from an esteemed designer such as yourself?

KS : Yes, people respect me at least to show that my design helped them.

DL: How does design help create a better society?

KS : We can help others through the products we design, or we can inspire people's awareness of environmental protection through the posters we design.

DL: What are you currently working on that you are especially excited about?

KS : When I was in the woodworking lab, I could indulge in my works.

DL: Which design projects gave you the most satisfaction, why?

KS : Hangers designed for the disabled make me feel like I can do my best for others.

DL: What would you like to see changed in design industry in the coming years?

KS : Hope designers not only make money, but also pay attention to humanistic care

DL: Where do you think the design field is headed next?

KS : Probably in the direction of sustainability, people should realize the value of nature.

DL: How long does it take you to finalize a design project?

KS : Without a specific time, I will not perfunctory my works, I will calm down and carve out my many products.

DL: When you have a new design project, where do you start?

KS : Research, I want to know the users of the product

DL: What is your life motto as a designer?

KS : Don't aim for success if you really want it.Just stick to what you love and believe in,and it will come naturally.

DL: Do you think design sets the trends or trends set the designs?

KS : Set the design,We should understand why we design.

DL: What is the role of technology when you design?

KS : Make a model, which will test the feasibility of your design.

DL: What kind of design software and equipment do you use in your work?

KS : Photoshop,Rhino,Keyshot and Woodworking Laboratory

DL: What is the role of the color, materials and ambient in design?

KS : I think they are both important and indispensable.

DL: What do you wish people to ask about your design?

KS : No, as I said, my design is to make people realize the beauty of life and the importance of environmental protection. I want them to experience it.

DL: When you see a new great design or product what comes into your mind?

KS : I want to learn and understand it.

DL: Who is your ideal design partner? Do you believe in co-design?

KS : I'm looking for it. I think collaboration will produce great design and great ideas.

DL: Which people you interacted had the most influence on your design?

KS : My teachers, they always give me information and help.

DL: Which books you read had the most effect on your design?

KS : Design in Design

DL: How did you develop your skills as a master designer?

KS : Reading, all books, even if not design books, may become a source of inspiration for you. There is also a need to learn manual skills, more hands-on

DL: Irrelative of time and space, who you would want to meet, talk and discuss with?

KS : Monet, it's not about design. I just want to talk to him about painting. I'm obsessed with his works.

DL: How do you feel about all the awards and recognition you had, is it hard to be famous?

KS : Neither awards nor reputation matters. The most important thing is that you know what to design for.

DL: What is your favorite color, place, food, season, thing and brand?

KS : I love all colours, I'm not picky, I love autumn, I don't care about the brand of clothes.

DL: Please tell us a little memoir, a funny thing you had experienced as a designer?

KS : My happiest time was in the woodworking Laboratory of the university, where I could stay all day and do my work.

DL: What makes your day great as a designer, how do you motivate yourself?

KS : I don't know when I will leave, but I want to bring better works to mankind before I leave.

DL: When you were a little child, was it obvious that you would become a great designer?

KS : When I was a kid, I didn't think I would be a designer. I thought I would be a scientist at that time, but anyway I wanted to realize my value.

DL: What do you think about future; what do you see will happen in thousand years from now?

KS : Environmental issues, which is also my original intention of designing many posters, I hope that human beings should pay attention to environmental pollution while developing.

DL: Please tell us anything you wish your fans to know about you, your design and anything else?

KS : I don't want them to just think of me as a product designer. I also design posters, paint oil paintings, sculpture, cooking and so on. I love all the good things in life.

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