Not long ago, I came across some research that confirmed what I suspected for years: Taking notes by hand leads to better informa- tion comprehension and retention than using a laptop. Apparently, using pen and paper requires your brain to be more selective
about what to process; in other words, you think more.
Experts say that creative writing is also more successful when done by hand,
because the unfinished state and slower pace of a longhand draft is more likely to
be reconsidered and refined than the misleading finished appearance of a typewritten draft. This logic also applies to hand sketching and model building. There
is something humbling and meditative about wielding pencils, Exacto knives, and
straightedges that is lost when tapping and scrolling in front of a computer screen.
It is no coincidence, then, that we’re living in a time of renewed appreciation for
craftsmanship. The same thing occurred at the turn of the 20th century in Britain,
when the Arts and Crafts movement began as a backlash to industrialism. Today
we seem to crave handmade, one-of-a-kind, imperfect products with charm that
cannot be recreated by mass production. Just as the Slow Food movement began
in opposition to the unhealthy fast food culture, artisanal products take us back
to their makers, introduce us to a specific time and place, and feed our collective
desire for something personal and authentic.
Several years ago at Dwell on Design, I discovered some beautiful pendant lights
by Graypants called Scraplights, which are made of corrugated cardboard. Inspired
by the significant amount of discarded cardboard boxes they found in dumpsters
and alleys, designers Seth Grizzle and Jonathan Junker created a hugely successful
lighting line out of their Seattle studio. They continue to use mostly recycled materials
in their products as they’ve branched out to furniture and package design.
Operating out of a workshop in Red Hook, Brooklyn, Uhuru builds furniture
such as pieces fashioned from weathered Ipe wood from the Coney Island
By Charrisse Johnston, ASID, LEED AP BD+C, Associate AIA
104 interiors+sources may2017 interiorsandsources.com
MADE BY MAKERS
An increasing appreciation for artisanship has emerged from the general desire for authentic, personalized experiences.
The Cyclone lounge chair by Uhuru is
made from salvaged Ipe wood from
the Coney Island boardwalk.