My mission as a designer is sustainability.
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I want to create things that are not only good for the planet but also good for the people who use them and live in/around them. To design sustainably, three pillars need to be considered: people, the product and the system. When designing for people, human-centered design is the methodology I like to follow. The product itself can be broken apart into three layers: functionality, materiality, and concept. The system consists of each shareholder: the designer, consumer, manufacturer, seller, etc. For me, in order for a product to be sustainable, it has to be designed keeping in mind all three pillars, create no new problems in the process, and solve more than just a functional issue.
I think that design is currently lacking a sense of urgency when it comes to the topic of sustainability. Designers and marketing seem to be content with greenwashing products. I see a pattern of declaring products “eco-friendly” if they’re made from recycled plastic, even if that plastic goes straight into the trash afterward anyway. Manufacturing and product lifecycle are forgotten in lieu of using “natural” looking colors and “hand-drawn” typefaces. The onus is still being put on consumers to make better decisions instead of holding the corporations in charge of design and manufacturing to a higher standard. There is a general understanding and acceptance that climate change is a real and immediate threat, but on the whole, there’s been little to no action on behalf of designers and producers to make positive changes.