Q&A | Lucy Richards
Lucy Richards is Founder and Creative Director of StudioLR in Scotland.
A very well respected figure in the industry, Lucy is a fellow member of the SEGD and we first met at an EG symposium at The V&A in 2012.
What’s your favourite building – and why do you like it?
Easy one – The Royal Commonwealth Pool in Edinburgh. Designed by my father for the Commonwealth Games in 1970. I learned to swim there and now my kids swim there too so it’s a special place for me. A sublime, white, horizontal form set against the backdrop of Salisbury Crags so the views out of the floor to ceiling windows are wonderful. It continues to look cool and modern 50 years on.
Thinking across disciplines (product/print/fashion etc.), what is your favourite design?
A product. To create something that people choose to buy and use every day must be hugely satisfying. My favourite is probably something designed by Apple but they make so many lovely products it’s pretty difficult to choose just one.
A chef has her knives, an artist, his brushes – what tool of the trade couldn’t you live without and why?
Curiosity and optimism.
Who’s your design hero and why?
The design team here at StudioLR. I’m inspired every day by each one of them – they solve the most difficult design challenges with energy, enthusiasm and a hefty dollop of humour.
Of all the projects you’ve worked on, which has been your favourite and why?
Right now we’re designing a set of symbols that will increase independence for people living with dementia. It’s especially rewarding because we came up with the idea, we persuaded a charitable trust to fund and support it, we will design and deliver it, and it will benefit from rigorous evaluation. And the outcome will address one of the biggest issues facing society. Ticks all the boxes!
When it comes to wayfinding and signage, are there any examples you’ve seen that you think work particularly well?
Lots! My favourites do more than just direct people or help them find a destination … they build on the personality of a place and tell its story so that people can easily connect with and feel a part of it. An example is Kentish Town Health Centre by Studio Myerscough.
What problem would you like to be able to solve through the discipline of design – and why?
Obesity… Loneliness… Infection control… Ageing population… the massive challenges facing society today really interest me. Great design and communication has the power to help with these kinds of issues, we just need to connect with people in an effective way.
What would you like to be remembered for?
You’ve probably guessed by now… as a creative thinker who made a positive difference to people’s lives.
Find out more about StudioLR
Read about our work together at Haven Court