About

Design Vision

I think a design can only be judged in context. A design must always justify the whole cost of its existence by providing more value to the entire system, not just short term profit to the shareholders. In other words, it must by viable: self-sustaining in a whole that can carry it. Design needs to resolve the tensions between the hard, objective world of materials and mechanics, and the soft, subjective interpretation by the people interacting with it, direct or indirect. Taking the methodologies and thinking processes of design as a starting point, I have developed an approach tailored to reflect this vision. When designing, I go back and forth between everyone involved to understand all perspectives on the problem. I then try to get everyone on board with a particular direction through conceptual storytelling. All the while, I am applying systems knowledge and engineering to tie it all together in a viable solution.

▲ That’s me in the picture, back in 2002, a curious, dreamy kid, always imagining wild adventures and drawing out my inventions and observations (the sketches are from the same period). I refuse let that inner child escape, and still don’t believe a dream can be too bold.

Resume

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Education

Accolades & exhibitions

Publications

▲ Apart from making things, I also enjoy exploring places, combining parkour, climbing and calisthenics.




Profile

Bringing people together

In conversations, I enjoy listening to what other people think and feel, and helping them out wherever I can. Others often describe me as approachable, non-judgmental and pleasant to work with. Being able to empathise with opposing perspectives has lead to people asking me to mediate conflicts. Since complex design problems usually involve many stakeholders with different interests, I try to use this skill by talking to everyone involved and looking for common ground.

Practical skills

From a young age I have been interested in technology, art and all kinds of visual media as a means of expressing my ideas. This has lead to proficiency in visualisation techniques, aesthetic design and technical skills involved in making functional mockups. Since I was always making things, I have developed an eye for detail and a strong spatial-, logical- and technical awareness. Through personal projects, formal education and working experience, I have expanded my practical skills and technical knowhow to include various production techniques and fields such as mechanics, surface engineering, optics, electronics and programming to an extend where I can build working prototypes, generate feasible concepts and communicate with experts in these fields for further development.

Sense making & problem solving

Apart from this existing practical knowledge, I am quite fast at integrating new information through association and finding analogies. This ability helps me in transferring existing knowledge to new skills, recognizing patterns to make sense of new subjects and find solutions within a new problem context. It means that I am a fast learner, and good at creative problem solving. I further developed this skill through practice and knowledge of design thinking and systematic problem solving methods like biomimicry and TRIZ.

Systems expertise

I believe product designers have an important obligation to carefully weigh environmental and societal effects. My expertise naturally developed to focus on sustainability and the larger system around the things we make. That means paying attention to the entire life cycle and aspects like maintainability, packaging, transport, recycling and material durability. Besides the relations between technology and the environment, I'm also interested in more technical aspects of systems theory, such as control engineering, cybernetics, mechatronics and robotics.

Clients & collaborations

Through various enterprises, I have performed over 80 jobs for 21 clients (as of 2020), from small startups to corporations like Danone Nutricia. These assignments range from single illustrations to full product development.

Get in touch



If you'd like to make an appointment, have any inquiries or just want to say hi, you can always reach me at hi@markzwart.com or reach out on these places: