Last week was marked by the early excitement of a new work environment. This week, however, things got more serious. I’m not any less excited about my internship, but I had to manually tune my excitement down a little to meet the productivity standards of the office. Fun offices are great, but they are offices nonetheless. Next to that, I got some more in-depth knowledge about what design at Fundamental is about.
“Design is all about fucking ants”
One thing that design at Fundamental, or design in general, is all about is fucking ants (mierenneuken); about scrutinising the finest details. At Fundamental we believe that perfection is a myth and implies a sort of death, but it is the striving for perfection which pulls a design to the next level.
“Design is done in the world, not in the mind”
Moreover, design is done in the world, not in the mind. At its best design is the immediate materialization of a thought process. By constantly switching back and forth between subjective ideas and objective physical iterations a design can grow most fruitfully.
Apart from what I learned about design, I also learned about my myself. What’s interesting, for example, is to compare this internship with my previous internship at Next Nature Network last year. Both NNN and Fundamental are small design companies, NNN had in total 9 employees/ interns and Fundamental 4, but I have a feeling that the smaller the company the more comfortable I feel. That is, I think my personal optimum lies in a group of 3 to 4 people. Probably, because I’m a bit more introverted than extraverted.
“I sometimes feel a bit too comfortable in the office by sharing my thoughts on moments when everybody is concentrating on his work”
What became apparent this week is that I sometimes feel a bit too comfortable in the office by sharing my thoughts on moments when everybody is concentrating on his work. In itself it is a positive thing that I feel free to share personal ideas, but it is not the purpose of the office environment. Less sharing, more working!
Also, in respect to the previous paragraph, progress has been a bit slow the last couple of days and I feel like I need to prove my ability to be productive right now. Although that’s difficult at the current stage of the two design assignments I’m working on, for which I’m still sourcing materials (a time-consuming task when you’re in a new city the size of Berlin). For that reason I’m helping out Tenzin, the production manager, with packing products, which is clearly productive, and for upcoming monday I want to have a set of quick prototypes ready to show and evaluate.