I often find myself pulled into various discussions around the idea of conviction of design ideas. That is, when to compromise on a design, to what degree should you alter your design to fit a client or a market, or how do you defend your design. All normal and conventional questions that arise through the working process.
Great design ideas can come from wherever, whenever, and they usually do. I think the idea is given a body, a skeleton and flesh so to speak from conviction. More importantly, conviction comes from research. Research is a slippery, tricky, and umbrella word to me. It basically means a processing of our experiences we deem significant, and finding a cognitive association to the thing (object in my case) that we find strengthens its communication to some greater context. The context can be the space for which ones designed thing is planned, or its cultural or historic associations. For the post, let’s say the thing is a bench seat, since I have a focus on furniture. A well researched bench design can be better defended in critique because the the forms, the surface, the proportions and all the aspects that make it what it is will have some sense of synthesis. The forms and surfaces will relate formally or culturally or in some established manor that allows it to communicate more effectively. Even when working with intuition and whimsy, the body of the furniture will innately grounded by the research and experiences preceding it.