Interview with designer Farhat Datta (FD), regarding views on design, and for the award-winning design Language Turnstile Language Icon.

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Interview with Farhat Datta at Tuesday 5th of February 2013: DI: What is the main principle, idea and inspiration behind your design?
FD : The main idea was to create an Icon that universally stands for 'selecting a language of your choice' particularly for the internet, for websites that can be viewed in several languages. The inspiration was the form of a turnstile which being a single element, has numerous planes through which one can flip, just like flipping through choices to get the language of your choice on a website, for example.

DI: What has been your main focus in designing this work? Especially what did you want to achieve?
FD : The main focus was to design something that may have a chance to be used universally, to feel the sense of achievement that one feels when something that one has created is being used by so many people in everyday life.

DI: What are your future plans for this award winning design?
FD : It would be great if it was accepted as the Language Icon universally and used a such.

DI: How long did it take you to design this particular concept?
FD : I worked on many other ideas at first. It took me a number of days to land on this element as the inspiration. Once it occurred to me I knew I had found a good visual representation of how to depict this abstract concept.

DI: Why did you design this particular concept? Was this design commissioned or did you decide to pursuit an inspiration?
FD : This concept came as an inspiration to me and I was excited about how it fit the design requirements, I enjoyed working on it.

DI: Is your design being produced or used by another company, or do you plan to sell or lease the production rights or do you intent to produce your work yourself?
FD : This design can be used universally.

DI: What made you design this particular type of work?
FD : This is the type of work that I am usually involved in, so it suited me to do it.

DI: Where there any other designs and/or designers that helped the influence the design of your work?
FD : no, there were no other designers.

DI: Who is the target customer for his design?
FD : The users of the internet are the main users of this design.

DI: What sets this design apart from other similar or resembling concepts?
FD : it is simple and direct. It conveys plainly what it needs to therefore it stands apart.

DI: How did you come up with the name for this design? What does it mean?
FD : the turnstile being the inspiration, that is what I chose as the name.

DI: Which design tools did you use when you were working on this project?
FD : I worked on a sketch pad first, (always), then scanned it in and created the electronic file on Illustrator CS4

DI: What is the most unique aspect of your design?
FD : The design has a certain movement to it, which echos the turning of the turnstile. It conveys a 3 dimensional feel to it.

DI: Who did you collaborate with for this design? Did you work with people with technical / specialized skills?
FD : I worked on it alone.

DI: What is the role of technology in this particular design?
FD : The technology helps to make it look crisp more easily as it is an icon design and needs to be clean and easily scaled down while retaining all it's clarity.

DI: Is your design influenced by data or analytical research in any way? What kind of research did you conduct for making this design?
FD : I researched which scripts are more popularly known by people visually. I researched on elements that had a turning and changing action to them and I sketched a lot.

DI: What are some of the challenges you faced during the design/realization of your concept?
FD : The biggest challenge was to come up with an icon that visually depicted this abstract concept and the fact that it needed to be scaled down to very small size too was a challenge, as only simple elements which appear clear weather small or big in size, were going to work, at the same time the idea to be conveyed was complex.

DI: How did you decide to submit your design to an international design competition?
FD : This competition itself was organised through this international platform.

DI: What did you learn or how did you improve yourself during the designing of this work?
FD : I learnt that when you are stuck for ideas, it is exactly the time to dig deeper, as the solution that works is often just on the other side of the road block.

DI: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
FD : Just that it was so much fun!