In this week post, I want to introduce to MIMAW, which in my opinion, is the coolest thing ever. MIMAW stands for Micro.Macro.Workshop, is a creatively driven design and 3D printing studio operating in the intersection of design, craft and technology.
I got in contact with MIMAW‘s creator Vei Tan after seeing her wonderful creation in my favourite shop, A Good Space. Vei is lovely enough to reply to my email and agree to share her inspirations here…
“MIMAW was actually born while I went on a hunt for my first architecture job, with the economic downturn it proved very difficult to find employment. My partner found a job but I never did! So as they say, “if opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door!” Hence, out of intense curiosity and the hunger to create and explore ideas, we purchased our first 3D printer in March 2013 and spent a lot of time learning, understand and testing its capabilities. After quite some time with no better job prospects, but with so much ideas – MIMAW was officially launched in 2014″
MIMAW‘s philosophy “araw-araw” which means everyday in Tagalog, they celebrate the everyday banal objects people tend to overlook, with functionality, technique and play embedded in each pieces created. One of their signature piece is the Taba, or chubby in Tagalog. ‘Taba’ is a series of 3D printed containers which are individually hand finished through plastering, resin techniques and painting.
“Taba explores the generic idea and function of a container: the lid and the container. It then expands this simple relationship through its multi-functional and inter-changeable ‘Hat, Body and Bowl’ allowing a myriad of uses whilst giving them life to bring delight and joy. Each Taba is given its own personality and embedding itself into your everyday – bringing a little bit of sunshine”
With so much creativity flowing inside a studio, I was wondering if they’re ever stuck for idea,
“Yes, definitely! The best way is to take a break from what we are doing and come back with a stronger and fresher mind. We are always trying to explore different possibilities for designs but having a really clear idea on what we want to achieve which help minimize the “designer’s block”. Testing products digitally and physically are also really important”
The challenges in creating something as unique as these 3D printed creations,
“Learning the art of digital modeling and sculpting to be able to control the outcome of the 3D printers efficiently with minimal material wastage, being able to command the actual 3D printers and its variable settings and to learn how to finish each piece with various mediums. (However) it’s always a greta experience to be able to experiment with 3D printing. We are constantly researching and exploring other techniques, materials and ideas. We love seeing our projects turn from sketch, to digital model and to physical form”
“The positive thing for me is the freedom in designing and creating. I am a big believer in having no constraints with ideas, we don’t follow trends. We create our own pieces based on ideas and not trends, and that is what I enjoy most at MIMAW. I also love that we always embed a story behind each piece, whether it’s from a purely imaginative source or something that is part of our personal stories,”
One of the best advice ever given to Vei is a word of wisdom given by her partner, Patrick who runs their architecture practice, Superscale. Having someone who believes in her and always encourages her, is the reason MIMAW was born. Her favourite quote, which happens to be one of my favourite as well, by Mark Twain,
“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails, Explore. Dream. Discover.”
And what great advice indeed 🙂
If you’re wondering how to grab any of MIMAW‘s amazing creations, check out the links below,
Last but not least, MIMAW‘s advice for all the young creatives out there,
“I always believe in pushing your own boundaries, going beyond your comfort zones. It might be a cliche for some, but it’s so true,
‘Be willing to be uncomfortable, be comfortable being uncomfortable. It may get tough but it’s a small price to pay for living a dream’ – Peter McWilliams.
It’s human nature to have self doubt, but never let it overrun you. It’s okay to make mistakes, we’ve had heaps! Belive in the positive and your dream.”
Thank you to Vei for taking the time out of the busy schedule to answer all my questions and sending me generous number of super cute pictures! Looking forward to meet you and all the ‘Taba’s in person… 😊