WHAT I LEARNED
This Italia Design Field Study was not just an eye-opening experience; it was also a real personal challenge for me, requiring preparation and learning. The trip has also helped to improve my maturity and enabled me to study, live and work with others in a cooperative, collaborative manner.
In visiting Italian design studios and interviewing prominent individual designers, I understood the importance of the relationship between design and experience. Clearly communicating an idea meaningful to its users is more important to design than appearance is. It is also the designer's responsibility to thoughtfully address social, anthropological, technological and other issues. It is the combination of different values that creates the final design.
WOULD I RECOMMEND THIS PROGRAM?
An old Chinese saying tells us that reading thousands of books cannot compare with traveling thousands of miles. I totally agree with this. Because of this Italia field school experience, I now know and understand more than ever about design; therefore, I highly recommend this program.
The trip was full of interesting moments, academically and personally. Of all the memorable and remarkable interviews, the one at Segis would have to be the winner. The owner, Franco Dominici, provided us with warm hospitality and a sincere welcome. His fascinating life experiences, personal wisdom and humor that he shared with our group, I will never forget.
My favorite student life experiences were many, including sitting down at Piazza San Pietro in the very early morning, relaxing at Piazza Michelangelo enjoying the sunset, sharing group dinners at Camping Tiber, and last but not least, watching the Italian team win the 2006 FIFA World Cup at Dome Square in Milano. Yahoo~ ITALIA!
"You [as a young designer] don't have to be scared... I'm sure sometimes when you dress yourself, you look at yourself, you never like yourself... but surely, ‘I don't like this shirt, I don't like this colour, I don't like that'... are you sure you don't like it? Or are you scared of someone else's judgment?" (Dominici, F, Segis , 2006).
"We want to live everywhere with more things and bring them everywhere, and now we find everwhere the same quality comforts, [the same] freedoms" (Bevilacqua, C, Danese, 2006).
FAVOURITE BUILDING OR SPACE
There were so many amazing buildings and spaces in Italy. My personal favorites include Tempietto in Rome, Bargello, Santa Croce and Piazza Michelangelo in Florence, Dome Square in Milan, just to start the list.
I am currently a fourth year student at Simon Fraser University Surrey in the program of Interactive Arts and Technology, Interaction Design stream. I will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in the fall of 2006.
I took my first field trip to Seattle in November 2004 where I quickly realized that all of the theoretical knowledge learnt in class had to be supplemented with more field experiences. As a result, in the summer of 2006, I attended Italia field school where I studied Italian design and innovation. Visiting such a cultural and historic design center has added a great deal of insight to my interests.
CAREER GOALS AND INTERESTS
My current interest as a new graduate in Interaction Design is to find a junior position in a company advancing in brand design, a place where I can always develop and apply my skills. I am also interested in spending one year abroad, working or traveling through major design centers and cities to find a clear future path for my career. My main goal in life is to be happy in anything that I will do.
I grew up in Beijing, China. At the age of 17, I started traveling abroad. I then became an international student from 2000 to 2003. Throughout that time, I traveled around and lived in several Canadian cities. In 2006, I went to Italy, visited many major cities, and learned Italian design and innovation. Through these cross-cultural experiences, my life has been enriched.