Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Because We Can + Ponoko

A couple weeks ago my friend Mark and I went to a BBQ/open house at the Because We Can Studio in Oakland. I recently came across their work while surfing the web one night and was instantly inspired and mesmerized by their impressive portfolio. Because We Can specializes in Sustainable Interior Design and Custom Furniture. By working collaboratively with a mix of artists, designers, fabricators, and builders the people behind Because We Can are able to create just about anything you can imagine. I brought Mark with me because he is a master craftsman (he builds boats as a hobby. no big deal.) and I knew that he would be interested in the actual engineering behind their work -- I just wanted to look at all the cool stuff. The low-key BBQ was the perfect setting for mingling with fellow creative masterminds, as well as the opportunity to see some of their current projects still in development. The awesome folks at the studio were friendly, welcoming, and took the time to walk us through their process. Click here to learn more about their studio and impressive business model -- seriously inspiring![The image above is a project in the works for the offices of Wikipedia, a little website you might have heard of. You know their famous globe icon? Well, Because We Can is making it 3-dimensional. So cool.]

Similarly, while at the Because We Can open house I was introduced to Ponoko, another amazing and creative company. Ponoko.com is an online shop for individualized goods. An individual submits their designs and Ponoko helps bring them to life!

"Ponoko manages every detail for you to buy, make and sell stuff. This service includes a marketplace for shoppers to find the most original designer crafted goods, match making between shoppers and designers to get exactly what you want, a personal online factory for you to 'click to make' whatever you can draw, and a personal online shop to show, share or sell your stuff."

Although based in New Zealand, the wise people at Ponoko sent Dan (see his own designs here) over to the United States to set up shop in an effort to expand their business. Because We Can opened up their studio and is now sharing their space with Ponoko. Dan took the time to tell us all about the company and showed us examples of their work. Ponoko offers a platform to help artists professionally develop and manufacture their designs; what an encouraging and exciting new opportunity for artists of all types.
I have no idea what to design first, but I hope to submit something soon. ••••


Josh at Ponoko said...

Great that you got to check out our little operation - thanks for the writeup! If you need any help with the Ponoko service or your design, just let us know. =)

mark said...

Was a great night, lets keep an eye out for the next one.
We`ll have to get organized too... I wanna see something get made!

Olga said...

I really enjoyed reading your story, and thank you for writing about us!

Btw, you can follow us here:

Macro Blog - www.blog.ponoko.com

Micro Blog - www.twitter.com/ponoko

Looking forward to your next installment.

Best wishes,


Jon said...

I look forward to seeing any photos or insight into the SF hub... would love to see where my stuff gets cut!

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