This wasn't our first trip to Japan. We thoroughly enjoy Japanese culture, design, and philosophy. Our team decided to do a company retreat in the far south of the islands of Japan called Kagoshima. It's essential to gain outside perspective and appreciate other designs to gain inspiration.
Japanese design has a minimalist feel, but at the same time carries a complexity that can be experienced through their work. The details and attention is not only in the production but throughout their design process as well.
There is so much meaning behind each creation, for example, a simple hallway carries serenity and balance with earth and water or how sunlight is purposely positioned to shine in only through a portion of the room, yet enough to fill an entire space without it becoming overwhelming. If you look at most Japanese architecture, there is always a sense of perfection along with tranquility that it brings. A modern design is well thought and placed harmoniously in its natural environment surrounded by forest and sea.
As our journey continues, we noticed temples all around. Japanese has a strong Shinto and Buddhism influence. In Buddhism, their teaching is about the balance of life. And only through this balance will there be harmony. Shinto can be characterized as holding optimism throughout life. You see the importance of this philosophy in many areas of Japanese lifestyle as well as design. Many of the architectural designs such as the one below are always very symmetrical. Or having one spiritual animal balance out another.
We had a great appreciation for Japanese design, and still so much to learn from such a detailed culture. What we took away from the trip was mainly their zen philosophy. We want to create a collection that incorporates the minimalist approach, fashionable and most importantly bringing that tranquil feel that Japanese designs bring to us.
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