WITH just a year of working experience and at a tender age of 22, Priscilla Tan already knows "there are a lot of factors and abilities that a designer should have, other than just the skills set of designing". She cites the ability to communicate with people as an example. "I want to be able to relate to people or let others relate to me, be it through content, a story or an idea," she says. "I hope that as I grow as a designer, I can create products that carry these intangible values. These products not only can be created as a documentation of life but to inspire others as well." Ms Tan aims to do this in her job as an associate designer with Supermama, a local design firm-cum-retail store.
The company is currently working on a new product label with Japanese fabric producer Maruju. Ikue, the new product label, will launch its debut collection Animal Camou, a line of six baby items, such as bibs, blankets and towels. The collection will be launched at the Japan Interior Lifestyle fair in Tokyo in June.
Ms Tan's role in this collaboration was to create a print that was inspired by the patterns found on military camouflage. "But instead of random organic patterns or pixels, I came up with the idea of printed animals that merge into each other," she says. The print was first exhibited at Frankfurt's Ambiente fair, a prestigious consumer goods trade fair, and as part of the Young Guns - The Young Designers Showcase in March that was part of SingaPlural, a design event to spawn fresh ideas and concepts from design players in advertising, architecture, interiors and furniture design.
Last August, she created an artwork on a porcelain plate for Omega's Co-Axial Exhibition over at ION Orchard under the theme Engineered. "This plate was inspired by one of Omega's videos - Omega Co-Axial Chronometer - from one of the scenes, where the ocean and the cityscape were all made up of mechanical gears," Ms Tan explains.
Ms Tan graduated with a diploma in experience and product design from Singapore Polytechnic last year. She decided on a career in design after noticing the word "experience" in the name of the course. "The word 'experience' from my diploma really caught my eye and heart in design. This actually changed how I look at design. There are so many experiences around us that serve as inspiration that we can draw from. It will be a pity and regret to let all these go. Why not document and communicate them to others?"