Design
Where form meets function

Apple’s chief design officer Jony Ive, who’s innovations include the iPod, iMac, MacBook Air, iPhone and iPad, recently spoke to Hiroshi Fujiwara, who is widely regarded by many as the godfather of streetwear.

With both individuals labeled as an iconic figure in their respective fields — Ive revolutionizing tech culture since joining Apple in 1992 and Fuijiwara with style — the two discussed the launch of Apple’s new iPhones, “Animoji,” the impact of Steve Jobs’s words, the challenges Ive faces as a designer, and more.

Here’s what we learned from the conversation.

…on the creation of “Animoji.”

Ive: “We’ve been working on animoji, we’ve been working on being able to sense depth and sense three dimensions, which as you can understand, a huge challenge. It’s something that we’ve been working on for years. We’re about to find out how people use animoji. We know that there’s a connection, but I’ve always loved this part, where we make a tool and then you give it to people and now we’re going to be surprised. The thing I know for sure is that, in six months’ time, there will be uses of the product that we hadn’t predicted. Fundamentally, I think it’s because of the creativity and tenacity of our customers.”

…on Steve Jobs’s impact.

Ive: “The way that we began our event, with Steve’s words, I found exceptionally beautiful, particularly now at this time in the world. It’s this idea that the way that we express our gratitude and our love for humanity, is to try and make something. I’m not interested in focus groups. I’m not interested in trying to just hold a mirror to what a large group of people say they want, but I’m also obviously not just designing to keep myself happy. As a design team, we’re working to try and make something that we give to our friends, to our customers. It’s that sense of, in a way, deference that’s very important. Steve captured it perfectly. He said: ‘We may not shake their hand….but we’ve made something for humanity’. And I think that there is, for many of us, that sort of innate desire to express our gratitude to the species. This is the way that we do it. Musicians, do it by they practicing their craft. You do it through the things that you make.”

…on the challenges of being a designer.

Ive: “I think one of the oddest challenges as a designer is that, on one hand, you’re curious and you are inquisitive and sort of light on your feet. And then on the other hand, there’s the contradiction that what you have to explore to actually make that real requires being very, very focused and very resolute, sometimes even stubborn.”

…on why less is more.

Ive: “I think that the reason that we can innovate in the way that we can here is that we’re so focused and we don’t make an enormous number of products. It’s the depth. We have an appetite and we have lots of ideas to make many more products than we do. And one of the most difficult parts of our job is to decide which ones we’re going to focus on. And then that means saying no and not developing a lot of things that we might still find interesting and compelling.”

Head over to Dazed Digital to read the interview in its entirety.

And in case you missed it, Hiroshi Fujiwara shared his insight on the future of streetwear and Jony Ive reflects on 20 years of Apple design below.

Words by Renz Ofiaza
Staff Writer

Renz Ofiaza is a Staff Writer at Highsnobiety and based in Brooklyn.

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