Design is generally a specialised activity, but I am a design GP. By adding an inventive streak and experience to a broad knowledge of materials and production processes, I can come up with innovative solutions to diverse design problems.
Over the years I have had the opportunity to be involved in a wide range of interesting and challenging projects.
Many years designing and making furniture taught me what a wonderful material wood is and the practical realities of the form and function balance – a chair must work as a chair as well as look good.
I designed exhibitions for South West Arts and the Crafts Council, and converted a 19th century granite barn into a dwelling, offices and workshop. I designed and made a kite-powered 6.5m ocean-going 'sailing' boat, and books and covers for Alison Hodge Publishers.
In Jamaica I carried out Alternative Energy R&D at CAST (the College of Arts, Science and Technology) which included the design and development of a commercial solar banana dryer.
And then I spent seven years designing and developing the ROCAT open-water rowing catamaran which broke new ground in all directions. The catamaran configuration provides an unheard of combination of speed and stability, and the novel rowing mechanism is more efficient and less likely to injure the rower’s back. But the boat’s production was most radical and is a good example how specialist knowledge and accepted practice can get in the way of innovation. When I figured out a way to mould the hulls in one piece I didn’t know that accepted practice deemed that it was not possible – the result is exceptionally strong and light.
If you have a design problem, and like things you see on this website, get in touch and we can explore how we can solve your problem together.
Meanwhile, in the background, photography has always played an important part in my life. That is also represented on this website with downloadable stock images available on a rights-managed license. Most images are also available as prints on archival art paper.
cristofa AKA Christopher Laughton