Hi! I am Nick, an experience designer who likes to explore new ways of thinking and then build them. I am drawn to the area where technology mixes with art and design into interactive environments.
After receiving my Bachelor’s degree of Industrial Design at Eindhoven University of Technology, I went to New Zealand for a year, where I focused on expanding my crafting and organizational skills.
After my return I finished my Masters whilst working on other activities related to film, illustration, animation, model making and special effects. Nowadays I act as an active freelancer for various creative projects.
I enjoy travelling, photography, martial arts, all sorts of outdoor activities and visiting zoos and theme parks.
To me, design is not just about making ‘products’ or physical installations, but also about experiences in context. Rather than just focusing on an object by itself, I attempt to have my design facilitate a story for people to experience, once they engage in interaction with it.
So why do I focus on facilitating stories? Well, try to think of the last good book you read, movie you saw, or music you listened to. Why is that particular story so much more memorable over others? I believe that experiential stories are able to connect with people, because they are bearers of our knowledge, morals, values and fantasies. They hold the power to make us feel inspired, involved, empowered, and they may even change the way we think or act.
I believe that innovation can only be successful when people work together with the same mindset. That is why I try to design playful but ambiguous tools for people, to create personal stories that make them feel empowered in their own way. In my opinion, such empowerment in experiential stories can invite people to revisit their perspectives and behaviors, and as such become an active part of future innovation.
I see design as a way to make people care about themselves, others and the world around them. I define care as mutual understanding, empathy for the other, and the willingness to give meaningful direction to our personal impact on a societal status-quo.
I think design should intrinsically motivate people to make the changes they want to make. Design is an instigator for behavioural change. People can make alterations to direct their lives, but are often not stimulated to discover their true potential: “I know I am overweight, but…”. “I want to save on my energy bill, but…” We all want to make a meaningful difference, but it often looks as if it’s a bothersome, complicated and no-fun process. I believe design can help people build the self-confidence to take on these challenges.
I think that the act of making a behavioural change should also be directly rewarding and fun, and that design can help to facilitate this. I believe that the majority of our interactions with our environment can be made more fun and significant; I try to design systems that invite us to engage in playful activities, which are also open enough to allow personalized levels of interaction. I believe that playful systems can connect people, since it takes away the seriousness of consequences, and therefore allows us to overcome our social boundaries and start uninhibited learning and bonding. I also think design should be ambiguous enough for people to use their personal interests and values to find their own meaning through such designs. Playfulness and open-endedness can make designs resonate with a great diversity of people, and therefore facilitate immersive personal experiences, or stories, that people will want to share with others. I believe these stories can connect people to their environment ‘behind’ the design in personally unique but very strong ways.