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Clues for designing an attractive stand

Designing an attractive stand can be challenging. But we love being challeged.

As design of stands is our today’s topic, we have invited Rober, from 3D department. He is going to help us find the clues for designing an attractive stand.

3D design specialists are very much sought after in many areas. Interior design, videogame development, VR…. But, what are the peculiarities of 3D design applied to fair and tradeshow stands?

As we deal with ephemeral corporate spaces, that do not exist yet, as a designer I have one single goal, helping the client to imagine this space as close to reality as possible. So, I would say the main peculiarity is the extreme accuracy we work with.   

By what you say, it seems like the practical aspects win over creativity.

Well, it’s actually both. If we stick to definitions, design should comply with both criteria. And it doesn’t matter whether it’s interior, product or fashion. First of all, design should be functional. Otherwise it doesn’t make any sense. In our case, the stands serve for our clients to receive their clients and interact with them. So, this space is supposed to be as comfortable and convenient as possible. But at the same time, it must convey a message aligned with the brand’s identity and values. It must impress. And this is only can be achieved being creative.     

And in order to impress… What’s your source of inspiration? To which extent references are one of the clues for designing an attractive stand?

References are important, but in my opinion, not essential. In the end of the day, we all have our own working strategy. And the mine is creating a concept, an idea or even entire narrative through this interior conversation with yourself in the first place. And then just going for the rest. So, once you’ve built this narrative in your head, you can search for references that enhance your idea, but not determine it.  

Of course, an umbrella concept always guarantees consistency of what you do. And, back to the topic. We were saying that references cannot predetermine your work. However, trends are fundamental, because the appeal of a design depends on the public’s general taste in this moment. If you don’t follow the trends, it’s hard to nail it. In this sence, what’s your inspiration?

Well, stand is a piece of ephemeral architecture that has its façade, an its internal space distribution. So, depending on the purpose, I can have different sources of inspiration. Museums, exhibitions, street activations… For example, you enter Guggenheim Museum, the way the interior spaces are arranged there already inspired many ideas.

Rober Saiz, one of our 3D designers speaking about clues for designing an attractive stand.
Rober Saiz, 3D Designer at 4foreverything

Sculpture is very important, too. Especially, large-scale sculpture. It helps you understanding and learning to design curves, for example, that are much more impressive than flat surfaces, so that they make sense in terms of production. Then, I, personally, love movies and architecture. So, for me, they are very important sources of inspiration. A typical example would be using the Germany’s pavilion created by Mies van der Rohe for Expo in Barcelona as a benchmark.    

And of course, keeping an eye on what others do. You have to monitor other guys’ work, because people do lots of great stuff. There is even a kind of competition among us to see who is the most disruptive and innovative. It helps you to raise your own standard with every projects.

It’s curious that you mention production feasibility. Does it somehow set you back from being more daring?

Well, when it comes to an ephemeral space, want it or not, you have to comply with a number of budget and production requirements. So, it’s better you have your feet well on the ground. But at the same time, you have to learn to avoid self-censorship. Go first for something disruptive and then set back little by little. This is the only manner to achieve a final result with some of the initial creative and differential spark in it.

And a couple of words more about trends. Currently, sustainability is the big trend, isn’t it? How does it influence your work? Do you think, that it’s one of the clues for designing an attractive stand for nowadays audience?

I’ve been working here for 5 years, and I can tell you that it’s crazy how the sustainability has evolved over the years in this company. We have been given specific trainings on sustainability, so that we could incorporate sustainable criteria into our work.

Sometimes, you can find inspiration in the most unexpected places.
You never know where the search for inspiration can take you

How does it influence? First of all, when you start designing you have to already bear sustainability in mind. It’s called ecodesign. You have to thing about reusing new materials in the future, using existent materials to transform them and include the into your design, think of ergonomic solutions for more efficient transportation, rent rather then produce… Then, of course, using PVC free elements for printing, recyclable or recycled, eco inks, etc. The common mistake is to think that using wood or cardboard makes you sustainable. However, what matters is generating the minimum impact in order to reduce the carbon footprint. And minimizing it depends on many things.

And is it important to khow about production?

As we already told, our method here is to make our 3D’s as realistic as possible. So, when you think of something you have to also think of how to materialize it. In other words, production is there since the very first moment. And we, as designers, must know how the things are built. If it’s a wall, it must have a certain thinkness. If it’s an aerial, it has to hang from somewhere, and so on. And besides, when the designs are ours, we also generate constructive plans. So, imagine how important is to know about production.

Ok, and now the moment of maximum honesty. Do you always stick to the briefing or sometimes turn a blind eye?       

It depends. There are days when you hit a three-pointer, as I like to say, and improvise a bit more, but generally we follow the briefing. Sometimes, you do some research on the client’s history to see how much leeway you have. And sometimes, it’s even the clients themselves who, with their feedback and comments, lead you to bend their own rules a little bit.

Have a look at some of our stands

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