In addition to our regular work for clients, Envision has its own brand, Daga. I spoke with Takashi Okamoto, the design manager in charge of Daga projects. His comments are full of hints about product development and a passion for product design!
History of Daga1
Please tell me briefly about Daga.
Daga started from the desire to connect directly with users, with “products that designers really want”.
How many years since you started?
So, 4 years now? It started with a business card case…?
Why a business card caser?
We were in the process of renewing the company's business card, so why not make a business card case as well?! It felt like a natural flow of ideas.
Just a feeling!
“We want this business card holder!” I think it was that sort of feeling.
That sounds like a product design company’s reaction: if you make a new business card ... then you can make a business card holder!
I guess that for us the container is often more interesting than its contents.
The business card case is made by craftsmen in Tsubame-Sanjo. Where did that connection come from?
The connection with Tsubamesanjo started from our company president, Harry Uden, attending an exhibition, maybe the Tokyo Gift Show, where craftsmen were exhibiting. By coincidence, Takeda Kanagata were exhibiting there and already making their own original business card cases.
Takeda Kanagata is a press-making company full of enthusiasm, isn’t it? Making new connections is so important.
Well, for a start Mr. Takeda, the president, is amazing. Full of energy!
Envision staff went on a 'Tsubame-Sanjo' tour…!
Envision is a design company. Takeda Kanagata can make business card cases so… 'Let's make one together!'
It was all about the momentum.
There were a lot of difficulties.
Tell us about them.
The design was a bit crazy and very hard to make. (Sorry Mr. Takeda…)
The business cards inside are visible. What was the difficult part in terms of production?
Drawing an idea as a picture is relatively easy; the difficult part is turning it into a 3D product. Each part of the card case is pressed from a single sheet of titanium, a process which never tells lies.
Maybe coming up with ideas is not so easy for everyone, but it is amazing to be able to turn them into reality in titanium.
A bad habit in design is giving consideration only to the outside form, but as this design is pressed from a single sheet of metal there is nowhere to hide. Neither design nor production can “fail” each other, which is the difficult part. Including functionality, I learnt a lot
Despite that experience, you went ahead to sell the 2nd Daga project, the SLING-5.
The Daga concept includes ideas, but also trying new materials and manufacturing methods (the right material for the right job). So, after a pressed metal product we tried sheet metal forming.
- History of Daga1