Graduates of the Summer Course of 2011
Tasneem Babul Rayani is a San Francisco-based industrial designer and graduate of the Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Her passion is designing for the disabled and aging populations. Prior to entering the field of industrial design in 2000, she studied nursing, which provided a sensitivity for and insight into the physical and mental challenges faced by these populations. Traditionally, products for the disabled and aged lack the aesthetic refinement and usability of mainstream products. Tasneem aims is to make ‘sustainable design’ and ‘universal design’ redundant terms because all products should function effectively, degrade gracefully, and delight the end user.
Dean Bennett’s trades background manifests itself in his hands-on approach to design. His process is collaborative, involving a conceptual focus and active 3D research. He also participates in group art projects and is interested in how fine art research practices can inform meaningful design. Dean lives and works in Vancouver, Canada and is currently working on a mobile community arts vending and exhibit platform called “ArtCart”.
Joel Byam discovered industrial design while working in microbiology research, which engaged him but left him feeling creatively stifled. He began to explore websites such as Core77, PSFK and Noisy Decent Graphics, and was astounded to learn that one could earn a living while being creative and having fun. After completing his Associate’s in Fine Art, he entered the Rochester Institute of Technology’s Industrial Design masters program. Joel’s previous degrees are in music and business, and he has worked as a nurse’s aide, an emergency medical technician, and a finance predictor for Kodak’s creative think tank.
Patrick Christie was raised in Calgary, Alberta, where he worked in architecture before traveling to Vancouver to attend the Emily Carr University to study industrial design. He enjoys hypothesizing about how things work, and material exploration and relationships drive Patrick’s approach, and collaboration is of utmost importance to his practice. Dean Bennett, who is also a participant in this workshop, has collaborated with Patrick frequently over the past four years.
Marc Davenport was born and raised in Lancaster, Ohio, the son of a ceramicist and a weaver. Eschewing his upbringing, he studied computer science at Ohio University. After graduating, Marc moved to Cambridge, MA to work in the software industry where he has been since. By day he provides business intelligence and search consulting for large companies solving data modeling and operational problems. By night, he partakes in hobbies that are an excuse to learn new processes, techniques, and to understand the way things work.
Izabella Dennis is a graduate of Barnard College’s Architecture and Urban Studies programs. Her studies at Barnard and experiences growing up in a bustling, creative Texas household have informed her design interests and practice equally. Since graduating she has explored her love for and curiosity around furniture, the movement and formation of cities, and product development by working in corporate merchandising and launching her own business, Fifi du Vie. An online shop offering screen printed merchandise, the business has allowed Izabella to synthesize her design skills and knowledge of business.
Keith Hendren is a product design engineer for Apple, focusing on new systems architecture and core technology development. His background is in biomedical engineering, and he completed a thesis on the usage of Biomimetics (copying nature) in product design. Additionally, he has completed coursework in animation & video as well as graphic and product design, and he is constantly seeking elegant solutions to the complex aesthetic, functional and ethical problems that abound in today’s world.
Justice Diven is an engineer working to improve day-to-day natural gas operations for an international oil and gas company. He views corporations and the modern workplace as products of design, and is committed to thinking through how employers can craft work that empowers workers rather than frustrating them. Justice recently completed a project which reduced the amount of natural gas released by an operating site into the atmosphere by 50% in less than 60 days. He looks forward to integrating design thinking in his problem solving toolkit. He lives in Texas with his wife and enjoys dancing, reading, volunteering, photography and travel.
Sara Krugman is an artist and designer based in Brooklyn, New York. She studied studio art and film at Oberlin College and was the 2009 recipient of the Oberlin College Creativity and Leadership Grant, which she used to found The Bread and Butter Collective, a community based silk-screen studio in Queens, New York. Her design and art practice’s focus on healthcare technology has been shaped by her own experience of living with type I diabetes.
Lizzie Lo is a designer-in-the-making from Mexico. She is a member of Hunt Lab, a design collective focused on formulating an alternative emotional space where each developed element promotes wellbeing and surprise. Each element also communicates a story, in which the recipient gives the product a meaning, and, through interaction with it, fulfills the creative process.
Colleen MacKenzie finds inspiration in user research, creative dialogue, art culture and nature, and strives to find practical, pleasurable solutions for consumers and users of off-road vehicles, consumer electronics, athletic clothing and equipment, interior products/furniture and kitchen housewares. She has a BFA from Rochester Institute of Technology, where she was a member of the SAE car team and developed interest in eco-friendly products. She is currently making a small production run of chairs for select buyers after her design was well received at the ICFF. When she is not designing, you can find her in a lake, on a mountain, in the woods, driving an off-road vehicle or pedaling a bike.
Rose Newton is an educator, designer and researcher. Although formally trained as an architect and graphic designer, her interests span the entire spectrum of design. Her approach to both her teaching and design practice is collaborative and draws on disparate aspects of design. As an educator, she has taught not only graphic designers, but architects, industrial designers and interior designers, as well. Her current research interest is investigating and writing about new technology, design pedagogy and the creative process.
Laura is a graduate of Western Washington University’s Studio Art program, where she concentrated in photography with a minor in contemporary theory and art history. She currently serves as the graphic designer for the University’s Office of Sustainability. Laura’s aesthetic is collage-based and grapples with issues around objects, experiences, beauty, sustainability and cultural consciousness. As an educator, project manager, artist and designer, she has developed programs focused on civic and social engagement for Seattle Art Museum, Frye Art Museum and Open Satellite. She is part of a growing community that is combining disparate processes and materials in hopes of developing a new approach to product design.
Bonnie Park is a recent graduate of SVA’s Interior Design program. She has lived in Korea and been educated in the US and in Switzerland. She is thrilled to join thisgreat experience with designers and students, and loves learning from and interacting with people of diverse backgrounds.
After running his own web development and design company, Simon Raess joined Google to work on some of the most useful and compelling websites and applications on the internet. He led the design of Google Docs for nearly two years and is now working on some more strategic initiatives in Google Apps.
Greg West is a designer and strategist focused on developing compelling brands and products that trade on originality, quality and consumer experience. He has produced design and marketing solutions for a variety of clients including Nike, Incase, Quiksilver, Kiehl’s, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Stoked and Interscope Records. Greg holds a degree in Public Relations and Communication Design from the University of Southern California and currently resides in Brooklyn, New York. He enjoys live music, good food and, generally, making a ruckus.
Aaron Willette is a designer based in Cambridge, MA. His current investigations relate to the application of computational tools and their intersection with traditional interpretations of craft and technique. He holds a Bachelor’s of Architecture from Wentworth Institute of Technology and Associate degrees in Civil Engineering and Architectural Engineering. After completing his studies and working as an intern architect, Aaron returned to academia at his alma mater where he currently manages the fabrication facilities and has taught courses introducing design computation to undergraduate students. In addition, he in an associate with the global collaborative Live Architecture Network and is a project designer/fabricator/digital-guru with the media-arts installation group Artforming. This Fall he’ll be a member of the inaugural class of the University of Michigan’s Masters of Science in Architecture: Digital Technologies program.