Playmake is a pop-up creative space founded in the psychology of play. It seeks to bring designers to a collaborative event where they reconnect with the essence of creativity by re-learning that which comes naturally to children: how to make through play. The form of a mobile studio was chosen so that the play experience is flexible, and can be set up and delivered like a workshop in open spaces, or as an intimate and compact interaction.
Playmake promotes an analogue process. Through tactile engagement with the design elements it seeks to liberate creatives from the overwhelming virtual infinite. Four of the seven drawers in the studio house four key design elements: typography, colour, pattern and shape. The drawers are a contemporary reference to antique letterpress type cases, and the modular form was employed to simulate a grid system. Structure is imposed on the creative process to foster divergent thinking, rather than being prescriptive and stifling. The three smallest drawers house blank blocks that invite designers to engage in a participatory experience – to sketch, prototype and ideate. Through this exploratory tool, designers are confronted with a compelling philosophy: play is the key to creativity; creativity is the key to good design.
While always intended to be a piece that celebrated collaboration and community in the creative process, I had no idea just how many people this project would bring together. I suffered from a significant injury while building this project and its completion and presence in my graduate exhibition ended up being a hugely significant achievement, and only possible with the help of so many. A special thank you goes to Mark Yates, an incredibly gifted young Tasmanian woodworker, who so patiently helped actualise my designs.
All images are subject to copyright and taken by the lovely Candice Carlin.