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Hut F

During my first two years at Goldsmiths, I had met and got on well with a group of fellow students on the Design programme, Alexander Cotton, Monica Hernandez, Joe Harrington, Robin Crowley, and Stephan Bishof.

We regularly expressed the idea that it would be good to work together and in 2006, thanks to the generosity of Richard and Adriana Paice, we were able to turn that dream into a reality. With the Paice Development Award at Goldsmiths University we had help to set up our own design studio.

Hut F

In June 2006, Hut F Design was born (the name will make sense to those who study design at Goldsmiths). We chose Joe to take on the role of Chairman, Alex Financial Officer, and I became Communications Officer. We wanted to establish a collective, multidisciplinary ‘family’ studio, with a democratic and open approach. We wanted traditional boundaries of disciplines to be blurred, allowing a movement of creativity that would enable our finished pieces to stand on their own.

Our plan was to make Hut F as professional as possible. We wanted real clients who genuinely needed our services. To that end, we approached thirty companies. We received a positive response from many of them and chose to work with two. Our first project was for Raw Nerve, a design consultancy based in Deptford who host a quarterly networking event called RSVP. The intention of RSVP is to create an awareness of the wealth of creative business and talent in the Deptford area. September 2006 saw Hut F take RSVP to the London Design Festival (LDF) at Spitalfields with a travel-themed exhibition. This first project taught me a lesson that will be with me for life; that friendship and business do not always make a good mix. This project was really taxing on our relationships with each other but in the end we pulled it off and it was a project we were all really proud of. It was so successful that we were asked to extend and re-exhibit at the LDF head office. The event was selected by the LDF as a 2006 festival feature event.

RSVP Deptford

Other projects with Hut F included a collaboration project with MAS (Manufactures Advisory Service) and Copes & Timmins (the UK’s largest window furnishings company). This project was part of a MAS pilot scheme to help UK companies within industry to develop their brand into a more innovative design focus. Hut F developed a series of design concepts for Copes & Timmins, which were shown at an industry exhibition at the NEC Birmingham.

RSVP Deptford
(Imagery by Mark Davidson – Houston (3D Modeling / rendering) www.treatid.me.uk)

Hut F was a fantastic opportunity for all of us. It was a great year and it went by in a flash. As in all large groups, some artistic tensions did begin to show as time went on. As a group of six we successfully delivered our projects but we did not work together so well. We were a large team and perhaps the best results come from smaller teams of twos or threes. In the future some of us may work together in smaller teams.

The financial assistance from the Paice Personal Development Award was helpful but for me the business mentoring and support and the life lessons we received from Richard and Adriana were invaluable and will remain with me everyday. I personally owe a huge thanks to Richard and Adriana, without whose support I would not be working where I am today (Raw Nerve). Its an opportunity that should not be missed!

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Quotes

It’s been a truly fantastic experience and we cannot wait to return in the spring/summer to continue [building a new Centre for Roma children in Romania]…The sense of having achieve something from nothing and knowing that is possible and will make such an important difference to the children for whom we are building, meant that despite being sad to leave for the time being we went home happy.

James Dale, University of Edinburgh, 2006

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