Longtime Redux studio renter, Lindsay Windham is a freelance designer & printer with an extensive design portfolio. She’s an inspiring and bright spirit to all she meets–a true asset to the Redux community. Here’s a little Q & A interview with Lindsay where she talks about her unique, creative path which has led her from neuroscience to the creative collective, Distil Union and their clever invention of “Snooze”.
How long have you been at Redux? I started printing at Redux in 2006 when Jessie Bower and I learned how and then started teaching the screen-printing class together. I moved into the upstairs shared space with Nate Phelps in 2008, and into the new print shop space when it opened. I do miss being up in the “perch” and having a view over the entire Redux, but having the print shop consolidated and separate from the classroom space has been good.
What do you love about being a part of the Redux community? There’s an energy that you get from being around so many different creatives! It charges me up, and pushes me to make room in my life for creative pursuits. It’s a supportive network, and at the same time I feel like an important member too who’s there to give input and support back. I try not to take Redux for granted, it’s a give-give situation.
What inspires you? Other than the renters at Redux who are getting their hands dirty and making it happen every day? Music inspires me, and musicians, and designers of all sorts. I respect anyone who pours their hearts and souls into their expression. To me it’s terrifying because I grew up thinking I was going to be a scientist and didn’t think twice about art. I’m still learning how to let myself be creative, and how to be inspired instead of intimidated.
Do you listen to music while you work? I have a Sam Cooke 4-cd box set plus a few more of his albums that I put on shuffle when I’m printing. Oh man, in the summertime, screen printing and sweating to Sam Cooke — it doesn’t get any better! If I’m doing work on the computer, it’s a lot of Dr. Dog, Ratatat, Black Keys — stuff I can bop along to and keep my brain engaged and blood pumping.
Can you tell us a little about your background: how you found your way into design and what types of design work you do? My background is in the life sciences. I worked at the MUSC Physiology and Neuroscience lab after graduating from CofC with a BS in Biology. Rat brains and cocaine, which is pretty compelling stuff… In my spare time I was making posters and album art for friends’ bands for fun. Music posters have always been an easy way to get into art — usually affordable, and you get that direct connection with a band that you love. I had been doing most of my design work either on the computer or as multi-media collages that I’d scan and print. As a process-oriented person, learning how to screen print was a no brainer! And I’m fascinated with marketing and packaging and the whole presentation of a product, so that’s what I do now with Distil Union as our graphic designer.
Describe Distil Union. We’ve dubbed Distil Union a “micro-collective” comprised of three designers who met at DLO, an Apple accessories company: Nate Justiss and Adam Printz were the two industrial designers, and I was a copywriter/web/graphic designer. DLO was a small company which was acquired by the global corporation Philips Electronics, who closed our office 3 years later. After a few months of freelancing on our own, the three of us reconnected on a mission to create the sorts of products and packaging that we always wanted to see on the shelves, but were never able to execute within Philips for one reason or another. Our philosophy is to create products that solve problems in a clever way with simple execution and considered materials. We’re located in a live/work space on the 2nd floor at 161 King Street near Queen. Working at a window that overlooks King Street is a dream come true.
Latest Project? What was the inspiration behind SNOOZE? We’ve kicked off our product line with Snooze, a minimal iPhone alarm dock with a big rubber snooze bar. The inspiration was to solve the first problem we encounter in our day: waking up with our iPhones. The iPhone has replaced our alarm clock, but it’s not ideal — iPhones get knocked to the floor, alarms get shut off accidentally, charging cables fall behind our nightstands. We wanted to improve that experience, and adding a ginormous snooze bar to the iPhone in a simple dock design not just solved the problem, it made us smile. We recently received full funding on Kickstarter, and now we can’t wait to bring our first product to market! Snooze is only the beginning….
Where can people find you/Distil Union? You can check our website distilunion.com, our facebook.com/distilunion, our twitter @distilunion, or come by our office on King Street! Just call first, Nate and Adam live here…
Future goals? Our goal with Distil Union is to design beyond the Apple accessories market, to deliver unique, sexy products that people want. My personal goals? The usual stuff, to keep growing and learning and to find happiness, as soon as I figure out what that looks like… Oh, I would also like to revolutionize the music industry so that artists and musicians make the money and the living that they deserve. That would make me really happy.