I'm sitting at my dersk feeling a bit like a graphic designer - I've got the clean designed specs, the cool thermal mug, a wireless keyboard and I've spent a while scrolling through pages of design blogs. They are heavy on the photos of cool stuff, and my mind is infected with the feel of it, the clean lines, the colours, the indulgence in texture and form and thought. Luxuriating in brass inset in walnut, castigating the endless over-designed-but-clearly-uncomfortable chairs.
If I designed a chair, it would be comfortable. Because a good chair you sit on. A good chair you sit on so much that you can't even see it. A good chair you feel more than you see, except for the bits in the periphery of your vision from your seat.
And a good chair, once you've got past the novelty of its entrance in your life, ceases to be about sitting. No, sitting on a good chair, you can stop worrying about sitting and focus on reading, watching, curling up with your baby, enjoying the warmth of a friendly coffee with someone dear to you.
So once you've got the chair that's so good it leaves your mind, and you've got a table so good that you aren't distracted by it, a PC or a notepad and pen that just works, what do you do?
All things are derivative, all things are a following of what was before, a continuation. Nothing is new that doesn't begin somewhere - all things are a journey, and journeys have a beginning. Having a beginning is nothing to be ashamed of - a trek across the Andes is no less a thing because you didn't invent the mountain range, nor the gear you used or build the town you started from.
Meaning is in the personal, the relational. Wood is better than plastic for making a desktop because the wood has a story and it has tactile meaning to me.