Honestly, I never knew I wanted to become an industrial designer until the winter of 2006. At that time, I did not even know what industrial design was all about; all I knew was that an industrial designer designs products for mass production. However, after several events and inspirations that occurred in my life, I realized that Industrial Design was right for me. Although, I never thought industrial design to be my profession and career, I was glad to have chosen this decision because it defines me.
When I was in elementary school, I was always the kid who would sit in the back of the classroom doing something. Whether it was drawing or creating something, I never left my hands do nothing. Whenever someone asked me, “What are you doing?” I would always respond, “I don’t know”. At that time, I just moved to Korea from America and did not know how to speak any Korean. Drawing was my only form of communication to interact with other people, so I carried a sketch book with me all the time. It made me so irritated and frustrated when I wanted to express my feelings to people that I once considered being an inventor. I wanted to create something that can transfer thoughts through imagination. This idea started me to think more creatively and see problems in the world.
Ever since I started to think seriously about my future (which was around high school junior year) I always thought of architecture as my career. It all started when I first saw Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Water. The house was my dream and inspiration. Its location, exterior, and interior design were everything I could ever want for a house to be. The house attracted me so much that it made me want and think about it all the time. How could a design make someone think about it all the time? There was something mysterious about that house that made me attracted to more of design than function. So thinking I was going into architecture I applied to schools that had architecture and design programs.
After I got accepted to RISD I had a struggle with myself to choose between architecture and industrial design. It was truly one of the hardest decisions I had to make in my life. It was also a point of no return because my parents were struggling financially and I did not have the luxury to switch majors. It made me think about what was better for me. After talking with my parents and listening about my past, I remember what I wanted to be and why I wanted to do it. It led me to choose industrial design because I wanted to invent my designs. I wanted to create my own style like all artists and designers. I wanted to show more of me in my designs so that when people see it they will know why I designed it that way.
Ever since I came into the industrial design department, I never felt regret about choosing this major. I met people like me and people with similar backgrounds; I felt like I was home. For the three time lines and all the essays I have written, they were all based upon my thoughts and ideas of my history. They are what I think an industrial designer should be and how history has taught me to be as an industrial designer.