For 1000's of years we have painted on cave walls, carved statues, woven tapestries, molded clay and drawn and painted our human experience. In the context of contemporary image making, almost everyone with a smartphone becomes and image capturer. It seems that more now than ever the image is the language we use to share our life stories. In this episode host David Kepron talks with Royce Epstein the A&D Design Director for the Mohawk Group, an art history major who has focused her attuned creative skills as a trend hunter, design strategist, writer, lecturer, teacher, juror, and thinker into always putting design in context.
About Royce Epstein:
LinkedIn Profile: linkedin.com/in/royceepstein
About Mohawk Group:
Data Tide: https://www.mohawkgroup.com/carpet/collections/data-tide
Relaxing Floors: https://www.mohawkgroup.com/carpet/collections/relaxing-floors
Royce Epstein Bio:
A veteran materials and product specialist for interior design and architecture, Royce spent two decades working in A&D firms before working in product design and development. Specialties include: visioning, concepting, sourcing, design development, and marketing of materials, finishes, and products, in addition to interior design work focused on material palettes and FF&E. LEED AP. Trend hunter. Design strategist, writer, lecturer, teacher, juror, and thinker, always putting design in context. Interiors & Sources Designer of the Year 2015. Collab Board Member at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Textile instructor at Drexel University.
For 1000s of years we have painted on cave walls, carved statues, woven tapestries, molded clay and drawn and painted our human experience. Images have depicted the sacred and the profane. Images created by the hand of the artist are like making magic - from nothing, something.
And that ‘something’ tells a story. It tells the story of who we are as individuals and a part of a community, culture a collective with shared vision.
Creating is the truest expression of who we are because when we make art, we truly put ourselves into it. Our life energy changes a lump of clay into a teapot and blank canvas into a masterpiece.
Color, form, geometry, texture, light – these are the base element of the image.
In the context of contemporary image making, almost everyone with a smartphone becomes and image capturer. Recording the moments of a life that races by. It seems that more now than ever the image is the language we use to share our life stories.
The ‘Instagramable moment’ has become a requirement in creating places. The image of that moment is the memory residue of something that mattered. A moment to express oneself, to say to the world that I mattered because I was there.
The egocentrism of the image changed in the Renaissance with the invention of perspective. Until that time, images were quite two dimensional. The perspective view positioned the observer of the scene at the center - everything was to be viewed form the singular position of the individual.
And so, our propensity to take selfies or Instargramable moments as first--person narratives of experience is really only a development along a trajectory of the image in the now digitally enabled visual age.
Images are becoming so ubiquitous that some fear the devolution of language in preference for pictures. Is the expression “a picture is worth a 1000 words more true now than ever before.” Will texting replace articulate spoken language or is is as the linguist John McWhorter says simply the development of a new language?
The design of these images is critical – overlays, filters, re-coloring, cropping, and all of the other image composing tools speak to the nature of design in a visual age. The image can be crafted to delight over dessert or stand as a symbol of dissent.
Everything is designed says my guest on this episode of the NXTLVL Experience Design podcast. And when we listen to her talk about design we find that it is taking on new meaning and expression in the visual age.
Royce Epstein is a veteran materials and product specialist for interior design and architecture who spent two decades working in A&D firms before working in product design and development.
Royce is an art history major who has focused her attuned creative skills as a Trend hunter, Design strategist, writer, lecturer, teacher, juror, and thinker into always putting design in context.
She is a design activist, cares deeply about social causes and is the A&D Design Director for the Mohawk Group a company that creates some of the best flooring solutions on the planet.
About David Kepron:
LinkedIn Profile: linkedin.com/in/david-kepron-9a1582b
https://www.davidkepron.com (personal website)
Personal Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/davidkepron/
NXTLVL Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nxtlvl_experience_design/
David Kepron is a multifaceted creative professional with a deep curiosity to understand ‘why’, ‘what’s now’ and ‘what’s next’. He brings together his background as an architect, artist, educator, author, podcast host and builder to the making of meaningful and empathically-focused, community-centric customer connections at brand experience places around the globe.
David is a former VP - Global Design Strategies at Marriott International. While at Marriott, his focus was on the creation of compelling customer experiences within Marriott’s “Premium Distinctive” segment which included: Westin, Renaissance, Le Meridien, Autograph Collection, Tribute Portfolio, Design Hotels and Gaylord hotels.
In 2020 Kepron founded NXTLVL Experience Design, a strategy and design consultancy, where he combines his multidisciplinary approach to the creation of relevant brand engagements with his passion for social and cultural anthropology, neuroscience and emerging digital technologies.
As a frequently requested international speaker at corporate events and international conferences focusing on CX, digital transformation, retail, hospitality, emerging technology, David shares his expertise on subjects ranging from consumer behaviors and trends, brain science and buying behavior, store design and visual merchandising, hotel design and strategy as well as creativity and innovation. In his talks, David shares visionary ideas on how brand strategy, brain science and emerging technologies are changing guest expectations about relationships they want to have with brands and how companies can remain relevant in a digitally enabled marketplace.
David currently brings his creativity and insight on brand experiences to an international audience as a member of VMSD magazine’s Editorial Advisory Board, as a Board Member of the Interactive Customer Experience Association (ICXA) and Sign Research Foundation’s (SRF) Program Committee.
He has held teaching positions at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology (F.I.T.), the Department of Architecture & Interior Design of Drexel University in Philadelphia, the Laboratory Institute of Merchandising (L.I.M.) in New York, the International Academy of Merchandising and Design in Montreal and he served as the Director of the Visual Merchandising Department at LaSalle International Fashion School (L.I.F.S.) in Singapore.
In 2014 Kepron published his first book titled: “Retail (r)Evolution: Why Creating Right-Brain Stores Will Shape the Future of Shopping in a Digitally Driven World” and he is currently working on his second book to be published soon. David also writes a popular blog called “Brain Food” which is published monthly on vmsd.com.
In September of 2020, he launched the “NXTLVL Experience Design” podcast which brings listeners dialogues about “DATA: Design, Architecture, Technology and the Arts.” His guests include thought leaders who are driven by a passion to create the ‘New Possible’ and promote new paradigms of experiences into the mainstream.