Alt Group are a New Zealand based multidisciplinary studio of 15 people. They can't really define what they do and hate the word creative types, so they see themselves working in CMYK and RGB.
They have come to Semi-Permanent to discuss ideas and creativity in general. Dean is representing Alt Group today and discusses how being a creative is like a sport, you need to practice it to be good.
Dean started painting at the age of 15 and first got into art school. He cites Spike Mlligan as a reference and the humour is quite apparent in his art work from that period. At the end of his degree he didn't really know what he wanted to do and the words of advice from his mother that sealed his direction was 'What's the difference between an artist and a pizza. A pizza can feed a family of four'.
Dean details the work for NZ based law firm Hudson Gavin Martin. It's amazing to see how creative one can be with something that is often thought of as a stuffy institution. Clever executions with everything from Christmas cards, scratch and win internship cards to even how the law firms reception area is a door matt shows that once you have trust with your client you can do amazing and ground breaking work.
Dean details how they designed a chair which was then sold to US based company Knoll called the B chair. They spent two years working on this and researching how people sit. This all was finished with a book showcasing their research and how much work actually went into developing such a product, the result was enormous.
Dean talks of how a lot of the job is convincing the client to proceed with the work over the idea itself. A lot of the time they try to stress to clients that if they invest in things upfront it will become a lot cheaper and easier down the track if they build the right tools now.
He talks of designers owning change and responsibility in their work. You can see the social commentary that was very apparent in Dean's early artwork in his commerical today.
For Semi-Permanent Dean wrote a book called This Over That which you can buy off their website right now. It's based on equations and hilarious word plays using maths as the device for the communication.