This was a night to remember eagerly awaited with excitement and bated breath. The build up to this event –the unveiling of the Fundamental logo was a flurry of activity and hence the anticipation understandably palpable.

The event started with a lively speech by Kshitiz Sharma subtly highlighting the soul of the logo – we CREATE, we DESTROY and we SUSTAIN bringing to life the creativity of ideas, creating opportunities and amusement thus destroying boredom, monotony, mundane routine, boundaries and thus sustaining the unparallel spirit of fundamental every single moment in all facets of life. He duly acknowledged the sterling effort and perseverance of the creative, production and promotion teams in making this a reality.

This was followed by a modern day fusion dance performance by the second year students excellently choreographed and bringing to life the essence of the theme of what logo was conveying. The event had reached a crescendo and had the audience on edge eagerly awaiting the moment of truth – the grand unveiling of the logo.

The spiral staircase was lined with the entire student community cheering and clapping in gay abandon and there suddenly descended rolls of satin cloth gently unfurling and landing from the ceiling to the floor, the roar of the audience was deafening when suddenly yet elegantly the logo was unveiled in its magnificence for all to see, truly a mesmerizing effect bringing to life in all its abundance the soul ‘n’ spirit – we CREATE, we DESTROY and we SUSTAIN.

FUNDERMENTALLY creativity at its BEST.


Featured Design Pro: C.Sven Johnson

avatar_61340_cWXkykGbZfZgb4DV3GEq0ryS9Sharing thoughts with us today on transreality, virtual world and ‘Industrial’ design is U.S based Industrial Designer and Simulation developer: C.Sven Johnson. With more than 15 yrs experience in the field of design and engineering, we sure have a lot to learn from him.


Currently he runs ‘reBang’ : a Concept to CAD industrial design and 3D simulation/virtual world development services.
Can you explain us a little bit about what Transreality technology is?

It’s not so much about technology as it is using technology in a particular way. As I mentioned on Design Droplets , I’ve come across a few definitions of “transreality”, but for me, practically speaking and relevant to what I do as a traditional industrial designer, Transreality Design is, at its core, using the same CAD file for both 3D virtual simulation and for tangible manufacturing.

Beyond industrial design is where things become especially interesting, in my opinion; when Things (“smart” toys, appliances, aso) become spimes and eventually kirkyans .While a spime is, by definition, a singular “smart” object tracked remotely through space and time – presumably by some separate tracking device – a kirkyan is a multi-reality spime seamlessly moving information between a tangible representation and an intangible. This kind of information transfer augments the Experience tied to the Thing in all its instantiations because information can affect the Thing and, by extension, the User. This User Experience component sharpens the focus on Product Narrative; a topic which has gained increasing attention in some industrial design circles (link)and which is the basis for a long-term project I started two years ago.

The nexus, however, is the 3D data set. This is because we exist in three-dimensional space. It’s how we best interact with Things.

As an example, a change in a virtual object’s shape might be transmitted to the tangible object which – using morphable materials (e.g. electro-active polymers) – automatically modifies its shape to match its virtual doppelganger. This isn’t so different from sending one CAD file off to a 3D printer, modifying the file and then sending a new file for a revised 3D print. It’s mostly a matter of materials and data transmission. Vice versa, a change in a tangible object’s shape might trigger a modification in the 3D CAD representing it; something the film industry does routinely.

We can do some of these things now and there are new toys in development which are already exploring the possibilities.
Is the development of 3d objects for the virtual environment similar to the development of tangible products? What extra skill set does an industrial designer require to get into this field?

Similar in some surprising ways but dissimilar in many other ways. Interestingly, as industrial design increasingly shifts focus to “Experience Design”, it moves closer to virtual environment considerations where the experience is basically everything. That observation has probably not been made by many within the industrial design community because so few seemed interested in virtual goods. I believe that will change in the near future.

As for skill sets, that’s difficult for me to answer since, to my knowledge, there isn’t a standard transition path. Plus, it very much depends on the specific application.

For videogames there’s a lot of initial concept design work, so most industrial designers moving into that arena would probably need to be able to quickly generate high-quality sketches and orthographics. This is mostly because, generally, the game designer is responsible for designing the experience, and dedicated 3D modelers will create the assets. Traditional sketching will be, in my opinion, the skill upon which industrial designers fall back upon.

For virtual worlds it’s a bit more open-ended. An industrial designer might enter the virtual goods market and sell their work directly in applications like IMVU, Second Life, and Blue Mars; or they might be involved in helping to design experiences – which includes everything from developing a virtual product with its own virtual user interface, to constructing virtual facilities for educational or corporate training efforts in applications like Teleplace or OLIVE.
Do you feel your aerospace engineering background helped in your development as a designer and how?

I think it both helps and hurts.

It helps in that I have a much deeper understanding of mathematics, physics, fluid mechanics and other technical disciplines, and so I tend to ask questions most industrial designers might not think to ask in the early stages of a project.

It hurts in that many industrial designers believe engineers are inherently uncreative, and so I encounter some bias from the stereotype. Conversely, there are some engineers which doubt my analytic abilities until I sit down and derive some equation or otherwise put my engineering expertise to use.
Tell us something about your project ‘Stray Toasthed‘..If this project is not going to be economically beneficial, then what will drive the manufacturers to produce this toy?


Well, for one thing, there is no intent for a manufacturer to produce the resulting toy. Quite the opposite. This would be a design intended for individuals and small businesses who can make and sell it as they please using increasingly powerful consumer-level CNC machines. So for them, it could be very profitable as it brings corporate-level industrial design to people and businesses who might not otherwise be able to afford it.

Once the community has funded the design work, the community effectively owns it. There would be no licensing or other restrictions for individuals or small businesses. Only big businesses – as defined by those who actually fund the effort – would be subject to restrictions, as they would pay a licensing fee and royalties should they wish to mass produce the toy. Money from such an agreement would then mostly go to charity, as explained in the project brief.

Consequently, there is economic benefit. It’s just not benefitting large corporations.
You believe that “Industrial” design is dead..so where do you see design heading now?

I believe Industrial Design is dead in the sense that the original mandate – to design products within “industrial” constraints – is no longer valid.

When I worked at Rubbermaid, everything had to be plastic; whether or not plastic was the best material. That’s changed. While there are certainly plenty of companies which still require their designers to develop product solutions with their core manufacturing competencies in mind, as more and more products become commodities, the differentiation is in the product itself and not in the production process. In an increasingly competitive global economy, it’s no longer good enough to have a satisfactory product made from a satisfactory material using a satisfactory process only for the sake of a “this is how we’ve always done it” business mentality.

As for where Industrial Design is headed, I think it’s fragmenting, mostly because the original mandate no longer stands. Industrial designers are now moving into User Experience Design or Human-Computer Interface Design or some other new field as technology and virtualization encroach upon restrictions traditional inherent in tangible goods. Where there used to be human factors for physical buttons, we increasingly have a UI specialist designing variable, customizable interfaces. With electro-active materials, even the tangible becomes variable. Things are no longer static.

In the end, I think industrial designers are getting what they’ve always claimed to want: freedom. However, the old saying, “Be careful what you wish for, you might get it” applies. There’s quite a bit of career confusion out there right now and young designers are increasingly being forced to decide which new subset of (Industrial) Design they wish to pursue.
You spoke about how ‘future children will be modeling their own cars using a web-based application, playing with them in an online virtual world, sharing/selling components, and even sending their designs to rapid-manufacturing shops for fabrication’..won’t such mass customisation lead to chaos?

I don’t believe so, as I don’t recall reading in the history books how pre-Industrial Revolution toys were chaotic.

Play-doh is customizable. So is the sand in a sandbox. Even Legos have an element of customization as part of their DNA. I’ve never heard consumers express concern for such things. The only people who seem concerned about customizable products are those designers who believe their solution is the best and only solution.

It’s an odd attitude for an industrial designer to take, in my opinion, considering we design mass-produced objects with inherent compromises in order to please the greatest number of people to maximize sales and corporate profits. Surely the ability to modify a product to better fit one’s hand – or even one’s personal aesthetic – should be acceptable to industrial designers. We’re not artists, after all.

The real key and where I believe we’ll find a worthwhile challenge is in placing limits on customization.
Is the new wave of social networking affecting designers..if yes how?

I think it’s beginning to affect designers, but as a group we don’t seem especially engaged or interested with these developments.

One example of how social networking is affecting industrial designers is this interview. If not for Twitter, you’d likely never have read the things I’ve written, learned of the Stray Toasthed effort or contacted me. You’re a world away. Likewise, I enjoy reading comments from designers in different parts of the world. I personally believe it’s important for designers to at least have some understanding of other cultures, and social networking facilitates the kinds of interactions which promote better understanding.
If designers are bound by big corporations, what according to you will liberate designers from their clutches?

Options. There used to be a time when people crafted their own product and sold it for a living. It’s not really been that way for a couple of centuries, but as increasingly sophisticated tools – both for design and fabrication but also for marketing/advertising/selling/etc – migrate down to individuals, I believe to some degree we’ll return to those practices. You can see it already in sites like Etsy, Ponoko, and Shapeways.
Any advice for the students who will be entering in the industry?

My advice would be to pay less attention to the exceptions in the design world – Apple, IDEO, Samsung, aso – and better understand the typical industrial designer work experience. There’s a significant amount of press around a very few companies and the truth is many if not most graduates won’t be in a business environment in which industrial design is highly regarded. Instead, they can expect to have their work second-guessed and often go unappreciated.

There’s a reason so many designers burn out at a relatively early point in their career and I believe having a better handle on what to expect might lead to longer careers which, in the end, benefits us all as we become a greater force in business

We at Symbiosis Design thank Mr. C.Sven Johnson for taking time off and sharing his thoughts with us. We look forward to more such interactions in future with him.
Check out his amazing work on coroflot
Connect on twitter: reBang

Please do comment on any thoughts, questions, discussions about this interview below.

Featured Student: Indu Vishwanathan

Fashion Design 4th year student

Q) What inspired you to take up fashion design as a career?

A) I was a commerce student, but I had an extra curricular fine art course which i did for 7 years; and my mentor inspired me….totally!!

Q) So what are the specific areas within fashion that you are particularly interested in?

A) I’m mostly into textiles and Indian heritage crafts.So I usually take a textile of great value and give it simple constructions which focus on the textile itself.

Q) Tell us about the collection you designed at your first ever fashion show in college.

A) Basically it was a showcase of the craft documentation module and i chose to go to Kanchipuram,the silk city of India.The textile was so rich in color and texture that I didn’t need to stress on my garment! The theme was related to the city and was named ‘Ambika’ ; showing 3 forms of Indian goddesses; Lakshmi,Saraswathi and Durga.My garments showed the power of Durga.The other people in my group were Nitin and Ruchi Shinde.

Q) What has been your favorite project in college so far? Why?

A) Except for the craft documentation, the other project I love was the ‘recent developments in apparel industry’ module where i did my complete research work on natural dyeing.It helped me learn about different techniques India has developed over the years!! I did a few natural dyed samples on my own,by just using the most simple things that we use in cooking and daily life.

Q) Your dream job?

A) To be an established designer.Someone like Tarun Tahiliani or Anuradha Vakil..they are my favorite designers!

Q) What other non-design activities do you like doing?

A) I like painting Ganesh ji in various ways, shopping for junk jewelery, movies (of course) and I love washing clothes!!

Art of the Day




3rd Year Graphic Design

3rd year Graphic Design

A day trip to Purandhar as a part of a 30 day photography module


A Trip to North India

I recently took a 10-day trip to North India (Uttarakhand) with my family. This was my first time there. I’d never even been to Delhi before, so it was a completely new experience for me. The Delhi heat and traffic were terrible. As soon as I got out of the airport, I wished we would have landed somewhere else. I had a long car ride ahead of me as well; 6 hours long to be exact. This would get me to a mid-way overnight halt at a small village called Rudrapur. The experience had not been too great up to this point.

It was only the next morning, after another long ride in the same car, that I truly began to appreciate the charm and beauty of the place. The pines were everywhere, all parallel to each other, all growing straight up out of sloped mountain terrain. Every few miles there was a new lake or river or waterfall of some kind. Each turn we took revealed new layers of mountains with the majestic Himalayas ever present in the distance, towering over everything else in sight.

Now, my family is not exactly the adventurous type. I did manage to trek up to the highest point in Binsar at 6AM one morning, but the rest of the time spent there was less interesting. Each day was dominated by a boring trip to some temple or the other. I decided to make the most of it; I pulled out my camera, clicked madly and captured everything in sight on my little sensor. I got a good 2500 pictures out of the madness (thanks to the burst shooting mode) and had a good time in the process. I’d bought a new 50mm f/1.4 lens and a circular polarizer before leaving and used the time I spent there to get familiar with them.

After I got back home on Friday, I went through the gigantic sea of photographs, selected a handful of the best ones and post-processed them to my liking. Here’s what I got out of it:

IMG 5605IMG 5994IMG 6424IMG 6800IMG 7226IMG 7280

If you like these, you can go through more of the images from this trip and my other photography as well at:



Originally posted at http://www.fluidcore.net/blog/2009/10/trip-to-north-india/

Is this the End of Legends?

When the king of pop Michael Jackson died, people in the world pondered over whether this was the end of the Legends. The people who not only get recognition in their time, but are also remembered by future generations of the world for their contributions and distinctive style. People like Elvis Priestley, Marilyn Monroe….
I understand why those people worry. In this day and age, its like every one’s out to get FAME. Not so much appreciation and respect for their talent, FAME. And more often than not, they seem to get it. A few examples:
1. A former bar dancer turned ‘item’ girl has become the most talked about ‘celebrity’, and after publicly abusing almost everyone in the public eye, and taking part in endless reality shows, she complains about how the media is after her, and how people should ‘take her seriously’.
2. Actors are now famous more for their dressing sense and public appearances than their contribution to the art. So the secret to making it these days- a Gucci bag in one hand, an influential person in the other…
3. Even a so-called Swami (or yoga-nut), thinks he should make his opinions heard on topics that have no relation to anything he does. And even then, makes a fool of himself..(Homosexuality is not a disease…greed for money is)
And those are just a few of the many examples that would reinforce the fact, that in our time, there is no such person who will go on to be a Legend. So I join those people who worry.