Why I Design 2016 | Museum Of Vancouver

Why I Design 2016 | November 4th 2016
Museum Of Vancouver
Project Lead


Designers talk about what they do
and why they’re doing it in Vancouver.

Why I Design is an annual event hosted by The Museum Of Vancouver that invites visitors to explore and celebrate innovation in action. Dozens of designers are stationed throughout the museum to discuss their work with attendees throughout the evening. With over 20 Vancouver-based designers, Why I Design 2016 is an experience packed with innovation and intrigue.

Attendees can discover the stories behind the development of everyday technologies and cool things you’ve never seen before. Visitors are encouraged to ask the designers—ranging from those launching their careers to innovators in international corporations—what motivates them, how they do what they do, and why Vancouver inspires them to keep doing it.

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Participating Designers

Name Presenting Biography
Oldooz Pooyanfar, Electronics Engineer / Simon Fraser University
Sensors for monitoring bee colonies Oldooz Pooyanfar received her BASc in electronics engineering from SFU in 2014. She is currently doing her MSc in the Mechatronics Department. Her work is aimed at helping agriculture and apiculture industries by observing the health of bee colonies.
Felix Böck, Wood Technology and Industrial Engineer / ChopValue Manufacturing
Repurposed bamboo for furniture/decor Wood technology and industrial engineer Felix Böck is working towards his PhD at UBC. His firm is a product development and design start-up that innovates with recycled chopsticks as its raw material.
*Read an interview with Felix here.
Joe Dahmen, Co-Director / AFJD
Sustainable masonry Joe Dahmen, of design and research firm AFJD, is Assistant Professor at the UBC School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. He is an expert on sustainable building technology and a 2016-17 scholar at the Peter Wall Institute of Advanced Studies.
Riley McFerrin, Founder / Hinterland Design
Pillowy Bench: A wood and upholstered bench

Riley McFerrin is a visual artist, designer, and builder at Hinterland, whose woodworkers and craftspeople build by hand with natural materials, including salvaged, local, and eco products.

Patrick Christie, Wood Product Designer + Danielle Gilday and Logan Gilday, Co-Founders / Yew WoodShop
Wood Design Patrick Christie operates design studio Daly Co. out of Yew WoodShop, a small-scale production workshop. Logan Gilday, an industrial designer who runs Yew WoodShop with his partner Danielle Gilday, upcylces wood in order to produce functional furniture.
Barbara Alink, Inventor / The Alinker
High-tech walker / walking aid Barbara Alink travelled the world for 10 years managing reconstruction and restoration projects. She brings the diversity of her experiences to connect people through design, in order to help build a more inclusive global community.
Read an interview with Barbara Alink here.
Alex Henderson, Founder / Henderson Dry Goods
Laser cut wood works Alex Henderson studied fine arts at Langara College and earned a degree in industrial design from Emily Carr University in 2006. She worked for John Fluevog as a designer and manufacturing liaison before founding Henderson Dry Goods.
Pierce Jordan, Industrial and Graphic Designer / Pierce Jordan Designs
Wax beam light fixture Pierce Jordan designs experience-based installations with an emphasis on sound-and-movement-reactive lighting. His work melds historical reference with minimal modern design.
Shannon Mortimer, Industrial Designer / Objects with Personality
Ceramics / 3D Shannon Mortimer is a designer-ceramicist and recent grad from Emily Carr University’s Industrial Design Program. Her work explores the intersection of digital manufacturing technologies and traditional craft practices.
Radu Postole, Entrepreneur and Engineer, and Jeremy Takada Balden, Consultant / TetraGear Inc.
Innovative safety devices for people with disabilities TetraGear co-founder Radu Postole, who studied integrated engineering at UBC, began with Tetra as a volunteer student, designing and building innovative devices for people with disabilities. Jeremy Balden coordinates tasks required to bring TetraGear’s lights to the market; he has a building engineering background.
Kody Baker, Co-Founder / VeloMetro Mobility
Electrically-assisted, fully covered bikes Kody Baker, who holds a BASc in Mechanical Engineering from UBC and a Management of Technology MBA from SFU, is a technology manager and entrepreneur. He has brought to market products such as electric vehicles, biomass energy systems, and process control systems.
Read an interview with with Kody Baker here.
Glenis Canete, Landscape Architect and Vivianne Harms, Landscape Designer / Hapa Collaborative

Models of the Jim Deva Plaza Megaphone and the Foot of Londsdale Plaza Megabench

Glenis Canete has a design sensibility grounded in urban and landscape planning. Vivianne Harms brings professional experience in architecture and public art.
Char Kennedy, Industrial Designer / Char Kennedy Design
Table mirrors Char Kennedy, who received a degree in industrial design from Emily Carr University, works in an East Van creative design studio. She focuses on objects that engage interaction and question the everyday.
Melissa Higgs, Architect, Steve DiPasquale, Intern Architect, and Ali Kenyon, Designer / HCMA
Design for Social Impact Architect Melissa Higgs is passionate about creating innovative public buildings where communities come together. At architecture and design firm HCMA, she focuses on recreation facilities and arts and culture projects. Steve DiPasquale is an intern architect. Ali Kenyon has a background in product and exhibition design.
Brian Giesbrecht, Product Designer / Form3 and Noel Buckley, Owner / KNOLLY Bikes
Mountain bike Brian Giesbrecht, a Bachelor of Design Emily Carr graduate, is an industrial design consultant who works at Form3. He has collaborated with clients ranging from start-ups to corporations. Form3 client Noel Buckley of KNOLLY bikes has a degree in physics, experience in manufacturing, and a career in engineering.
Gabe Lam, Footwear Designer and Developer / Native Shoes
Apparel A lifelong sneakerhead, Gabe Lam has had the privilege of combining his passion for shoes with his background in industrial design as a designer and developer at footwear company Native Shoes.
Evan Roche, Designer and Hardware Engineer / Jimmi
3D bioprinter In 2015, Evan Roche co-founded Jimmi, a firm that focuses on designing for applications of digital fabrication technology. He also launched the Buildclass workshop series, which educates participants about hardware development for 3D bioprinting.
Rory McGuire, Game and Design Director, and Taylor Fales, Lead Designer / Blackbird Interactive
Video Games Rory McGuire has worked for 13 years on AAA hardcore games like Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak, as well as titles such as Disney’s Where’s My Water? For 10 years, Taylor Fales has designed gameplay at Relic, Smoking Gun and Blackbird, an independent game studio.
Clotilde Orozco and Alejandro Sanguino, Founders / Abubilla Design Studio
Baby crib With a playful passion for wood, modernity, and recycling, architects Clotilde Orozco and Alejandro Sanguino founded their studio in 2012. Their first design collaboration was their daughter’s crib.
Nancy Knaggs, Program Head / MAKE+, BCIT
Instrumented hockey skate Nancy Knaggs works in applied research at BCIT, from which she received her diploma in robotics and automation in 2005. Nancy lends her skills in programming, designing, fabricating, and documenting to a wide range of applied research projects with companies, inventors, and entrepreneurs.
Jeremy T. Lee, Industrial Designer and Founder / Konisa Studio
Stackable kid’s chair Jeremy T. Lee, an industrial design graduate of Emily Carr University, runs Konisa Studio, a wood design innovation start-up centered around sustainability and lean production.
Lexie Owen, Project Director and Curator / WNDW
Light installation Lexie Owen, artist-in-residence at Burrard View Fieldhouse 2015-2017, is an interdisciplinary designer of sculpture, craft, social practice initiatives, and curatorial projects. She is project director and curator of itinerant gallery space WNDW.
Alixzandar Morle, Product Designer and Mural Artist / Engine Design Studios
Brand concept Alixzandar Morle’s design work focuses on strategic branding, user experience, package design, and furniture and home products, with an emphasis on using sustainable materials.

More information about the event can be found on the Museum Of Vancouver website

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