The Road Not Taken…

Most of you are familiar with, 

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both…”     by Robert Frost.  It was amazing to think this very thought as Repentino. was able to sit down with designer Screen Shot 2017-12-06 at 4.40.54 PM Vik Servin in Mexico, with his partner in creative crime,
and from working with Michelle and witnessing Vik in action, these two are the most successful designers because of their commitment to never thinking how to take a shortcut, but how to make anything the best quality they can possible can, and thinking that way from the very beginning.  They stand out because of it.
I love this what is sometimes called “old-fashioned” approach to work, to life, to anything anyone approaches.  it has been my guiding rod towards success, not wanting sometimes to dive into something knowing it would entail a ton of work to truly do it right, and so happy at the end of whatever it might be (an event, a task, a challenge, a goal, a dream)  that I decided to go all into the quality, and not worry about the shortcut or be worried about the most convenient way to approach something.  I realize now that I can never go back and reapproach many of the very things that took a long long time to work through, and also realized, I would not be the person i am today if I had taken the most convenient method.  I have quality students and colleagues around me, past and present that have motivated me to be this way, and I am lucky for it.
Enjoy this first part of a Repentino. interview with artist Vik Servin, and stay tuned for the second part soon!

Art for Art’s Sake

As we find ourselves in a world of faster, better, newer, (maybe not so much) and so fast-paced based on technology, demands, wants, and less of needs, it is refreshing to find an individual that resists the very elements we feel crowding in on us everyday, and that individual stands out as a beacon among the so many elements that continue to unfold and press upon us without invite.  When Repentino. sat down with artist Vik Servin, the theme of bringing beauty to all that he sees and manipulates, to make his own statement in such a fast-paced world.

I think It is important to notice Mr. Servin’s beginnings as a cabinet-maker in Australia – because this seems to help encourage the attention to detail that such work takes, as well as the discipline to the very details that lends itself to the aesthetic appeal of cabinets in someone’s own personal domain.  From 1993 to 2000, Vik Servin’s attentions turned to Graphic Design. Servin received a large majority of his knowledge in studying English in Mexico, but had his eye on Australia from an urge his father always had to visit the other side of the world. Determined to land in Australia, Servin obtained a catalog with an offering of Furniture Design, not something he had entertained before and catching his interest.

When Servin discovered someone organizing trips to Australia, and remembering his father’s wish to travel to Australia, sure enough, he took advantage of this opportunity and became part of an extensive educational process in taking his industrial design and combining this with a newly discovered skill and trade of cabinet design.  Things began to work with Vik Servin towards a larger repertoire of art.  Of course, Australia WAS on the other side of the world, and this chance excursion offered a side of design Servin formerly did not have previously, allowing him to enhance his talents and vision of design.

Around 2009, Servin found himself back to Mexico working among furniture Design, and where he began to develop a sense of tenets important to himself and the work he would go on to develop within himself.  The aspect of design to Servin was the most important, and although at times can be a nightmarish process starting from a blank slate to a finished product, and while the idea is definitely not on the same plane as the process, enjoying the result is key. Relishing in the ability to be able to work through the process and the realization that the process IS hard work, the whole process if part of learning, about yourself and the finished product.  It is vital to be aware of what you are doing as you power through this process, you may or may not succeed in what you originally envisioned, but working through the process is the key, being willing to stick to the project and see your way to the end is the vital part, no shortcuts to shortchange the process of seeing it through the end.

Vik Servin acknowledges that most often you might fail, but in order to get it right, you need to come to terms with realizing even though more often you fail, the process of working through this knowledge gets you to progress and figure out the process.

To challenge himself, Servin acknowledges that anyone can take on easy work projects, but he prefers to tackle more complex projects that bring a sense of reward through taking the more difficult path, a mirror of what Robert Frost often suggested.

In designing plastic trays and tables, Vik Servin does see a lot of individuals copying his earlier styles of design, and less a percentage of individuals willing to be concerned with the process and working through a process, as well as learning from the process as an individual works through it.  This further emphasizes the process of what stands out in learning the details and taking the time to do so through the process of work involved with a project. It’s definitely not putting       “…shapes together but making the shapes look good.”

It is often obvious to see the difference in design that seems to spend little if any details to the process that enabled the end product to be produced – these products tend to be just plain, lacking creativity, and not very many exquisite details existing.  Servin can see this, as an artist he does see this lack from the side, the back, from all angles, and that is what matters from a true artists, taking in the whole perspective.  Servin does not shy away from letting potential customers know this in his value to the aesthetics of a final product.

As Servin goes on to provide when he created stools, one of his latest projects, matching personal tastes of the creator as well as meeting the clients halfway to capture the true creative and solid essence of creating and designing.  Trying to resist the fact that furniture has becoming a trend, and putting the emphasis on functional, but not by itself functional.  Being able to resist the trend to turn out as much as possible, volume, and move towards moving past just knowing furniture and working through stages of design, this seems to be lost on many of the designers Vik Servin sees today.  Trained as a cabinet-maker, then moving into design, and then discovering new areas of transforming his work as well as himself is something he sees lost on many designers today.   With so many bands today, the results disappoint Servin, where it seems designers use such vast resources available for bad design, and less on the process of discovery that can enhance the final product to the level of unique and of quality.

Servin acknowledges the design market is very difficult, just as the process of designing Servin has experienced so many times before.  There are numerous clients, the market is becoming and is more industrial currently, and yet, does that leave room for designers to make an impact and carve out unique personalities for themselves?  Join us for part two of this interview to see how Vik Servin takes what he has learned and has moved into an area where designers can avoid pigeon-hole themselves and set themselves apart based on their process and their individual work.

About Harry Brake

Employee of Woodbridge High School, Library Media Specialist, Media crazy! :)
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