S P A C E | Battambang, ‘The Week the American Jumped Quarantine’ is a special issue from a team of friends of DK’s along with our founding members.
How people are coping with their situations where they are is one story, how we are finding out about things happening in the places where we have deep, dear ties, and reacting, together, in the cloud, is yet another. This is that jam.
Our conversations across the cloud centered on this remarkable piece of news:
A Cambodian-American woman ran away from a Center in Phnom Penh on the night of July 17, 2020 and was found by the police in a guesthouse in Kampong Cham on the evening of the 18th. July 2020. She arrived in Cambodia on July 15, 2020, on a flight with two US Embassy officials who were diagnosed with COVID-19 on July 16. The spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health, confirmed that this was the first case of people fleeing from quarantine. KBN
-From Cambodia News English
More to say. Saying it.
The feature photographer this time is DK’s own Akira Morita.
Issue #85 is published today.
You can order it from our store, for USD 7.
Here’s a link.
I’m finally going to write about what I do for work.
It’s taken me a little while to figure out what I wanted to focus on, for 2020-2025. I have this five-year plan. They always ask you that in interviews, right? Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I just went back and thought about all those five-year milestone moments, when I’d reflect, and find out what it is that the journeys have taught me. ‘Say Hello to DK,’ ‘Experiments in N+1’, ‘Practicing the Unknown, Uncertain and Different,’ and ‘Design + Discovery’ have, so far, been five-year blocked themes.
(See examples of projects completed in each of these phases, they’re listed towards the end of this page.)
I am focusing on the next five years on another theme, which I’ll talk about now. ‘Creativity + Innovation.’
Creativity + Innovation
Why this? These are just buzzwords, right? Actually we’ve come to a place where they can’t be, anymore.
This is why.
The rest of this post is at my personal site.
It’s this page: https://dipikakohli.com/what-i-do-best-is-this/
‘What is it that you do to stay motivated to keep writing, DK?’
I work with a small group of no more than 4 at a time in a project I love called ‘Interactive Papers.’ We are going to open a new circle in August.
Conversations take place each week with a fresh writing prompt that is based on earlier dialogues, and things people share, and research that I do, personally. It’s fun; a week at a time, asynchronously and in the cloud.
Sometimes I get distracted and start googling things like ‘how to write a novel’ and ‘tips’ and these listicles come up and all this ‘bestseller’ stuff and people tooting their horns without realizing that a new piece, something that is innovative, that hasn’t been seen before, but could cut a new cloth and shapeshift a different paradigm, is not the kind of thing you write to a template, or a formula. So I immediately back out of those pages and go back to my solid relationships, in the e-circles of email, S P A C E, zoom chats, Dropbox, and ‘Papers’.
Why? Because I just… disagree with the internet ‘besticle’ shite. I made up ‘besticle,’ but you see what I mean, right? More, better, more gooder money I am so cool and I wrote 5069 books already and they are all so popular and they have all changed everyone’s lives, like everyone. Getter richer. (That’s what it sounds like, to me, reading these ‘pieces.’) Where is the ‘back’ button? Out, out, out. I’m different I guess. I write because I actually like relationships, communication, and most importantly, communicating such that a relationship can flourish into a wildly pure aesthetic of a quality human connexion. I guess that’s lofty and idealistic. So?
That’s what I like.
So I write where I write. In ‘Papers.’ I like the interactive components, in our different technological spaces. It adapts based on the inputs, like a fuzzy logic machine. I really do have more to say about this, but I’ll save it for those who opt-in, via an application.
Applications are open now for an August circle of no more than 4, for ‘Papers.’ I’m currently accepting applications through the end of July.
See what it is, at this link for ‘Papers’.
Sending this essay, by email, to members this coming Tuesday, in S P A C E.
Last night, I was reading a bunch of extraordinarily boring articles online, which made me very tired, and also, reminded me all over again that the internet contains a lot of junk, written by clickbait-seeking who-knows-who, and their poorly paid ‘gig economy’ freelancers who are ‘finding my creative outlet on the side.’ This is sad. And this, too, the feeling that you couldn’t find anything really good to read without being bombarded by popup ads (2000s) or advertorials masquerading as ‘This is my honest opinion’ affiliate-link people, made me feel like starting my own mini-magazine. Which has no endorsements, ads, or BS.
Such a dearth of real-world, real-time information that I could discover, on the spot, also made me feel like hosting parties to get people together and seeing what we could find out, in the real world dimension, too. So that’s part of why I began to convene people in very small circles, in my conversation parties. It used to be really large-scale, but I found out I prefer simplicity. Depth, substance, and progressions over time. With just a few. This is why I make a membership-based thing called S P A C E. It’s so that we—we as in me, and the people who, like me, want what I want, ie quality–could get to the work of talking about things in ways that don’t waste people’s time.
Curating as I go, I’m putting together an August series for Papers, which is going to be about innovation, not in the business-speak sense, but in the live-it-and-talk-from-experience-of-actually-trying-things kind.
It will be published in S P A C E. It’s a special edition of S P A C E. It’s members-only. Memberhip costs. You can find out more about how to become a member of S P A C E at this crowdfunding page, under ‘perks,’ see ‘Basic Membership.’
Here’s a link.
To focus on deepening and cultivating a few choice relationships, we started the subscription service in 2019. The idea is to manage the flow of exchanges with just a very small set of people so we can deepen, and learn from, the conversations that emerge. Small circles. (No more than 4 per opening, seasonal opportunities). It’s think-y think-y but also light, and fun. Sometimes we have members-only opportunities to share about, too, like mini-teleconference calls in zoom meets, and other stuff that becomes interesting or useful to our members, a curated sharing by DK that is based on ongoing conversations.
Gain full access to DK’s protected-page posts and join our backchannel conversations. To do this, become a member. Membership is USD $10/week. This is how to sign up: Go to our crowdfunding page and select ‘Basic Membership’ for S P A C E, from the perks.
Even in a foreign country, DK does what DK does.
Gathering people, connecting them, conversing… Deeply, not trivially.
Two invitations are going out, for this week.
One in real life, one is virtual.
- Monday. One, a conversation in real life about ‘ecosystems.’ It will be in Dalat, Vietnam. More is here.
- Tuesday. Also, the ‘DK | Short course in Brand Identity Design’ starts on Tuesday. Learn more at this link.
Starting next week in S P A C E, we are going to press ‘pause’ for a bit. I’ll be updating some issues like this one, Issue #83 is a re-work of an earlier one about our jaunt to the High Tatras in Slovakia. The Slovakia side of these mountains was much, much more interesting than the Poland side, gotta say. Quieter, more relaxed. I took a lot of pictures. Some of them are in this issue. And a story, too, ‘A Walk in the Sky.’
Meantime, DK is going to be doing some fundraising.
Help us continue the effort to make more and better S P A C E.
Make a donation or check out our’ perks’ at our crowdfunding page.
Here is a link..
Today in real life.
I don’t know. It’s a long shot. But sometimes, remarkably, I actually do meet people through Eventbrite invites on the internet. One out of a hundred people I cross paths with are ‘my’ people. I think… I think I’m back ‘on’ with making invitations to this kind of maybe-you-can-just-show-up-and-meet-me jazz. Like ‘N‘. But… simpler. Way.
HT T. Thanks for that conversation, yesterday. Maybe see you at this?
You know the spot I’ll be at. The other details…
The third in the series ‘Finnmark’, today we share Issue #82 of S P A C E.
It’s called S P A C E | Rovaniemi, ‘Phaerah.’
Here’s a link.
Welcome to DK.
We invite you to try it.
For people who welcome, and value, that kind of thinking, as they look for new ways to approach old blockages, in an exploratory quest for: fresh approaches, unexpected perspectives, and dialogue through ‘discovery’ to precipitate ideas. Not everyone resonates. But about one in a hundred really do.
Creating space for remarkable and meaningful connexion is what we love, and why we do it is because it’s really fun to engage with people who truly enjoy the soft, social space that exists within three-d and even virtual bounded boxes of time. In which new and different other can connect, and interconnect, for an unexpected moment of deeply relating. We have done this a hundred times, in small and large settings, formally, informally, at home and for work. It’s just who we are. And it’s the sort of jam we love to be in, and so, we design to make it happen—to optimize and host for that. In short, the aesthetic moment.
And it works. So we’re still doing it. Twenty years, now, so.
DK is Design Kompany.
It was founded in Seattle by and Akira Morita in 2004.. Currently DK operates as a boutique, and is based in Phnom Penh and Saigon.
Today, the same core team are independent consultants in: innovation, design thinking, and experiential learning program design.
They assemble when it’s time to make something new.
A. Spaice is our research and development director.
Jas Plac handles all outreach and communications.
After a six-year hiatus, DK is ready to take on new design commissions.
Ask us about:
- Brand identity design (6 sessions)
- Concepting your new brand identity, consultation (2 sessions)
- Custom copywriting & photography for digital content
- Brand positioning, strategy & marketing consulting (8 sessions)
- Vietnamese-language brand identity design, in collaboration with our new teammates in Saigon (6 sessions)
- Website design + custom digital content + digital publishing
- Short courses for thinking about your brand, name, and image (view upcomings)
- Experiential workshop design + facilitation (custom)
View our work..
- ‘Expanding Windows’ experiential workshop for British Council of Vietnam, Dalat (2020)
- Atelier S P A C E two-year roving popup zinemaking workshops, conversations (2017-2019)
- ‘Self’, the unconference, experiential workshop for VIA Programs at Stanford, Palo Alto (2014)
- Naming, brand identity design for NUK coffee shop, Phnom Penh (2014)
- Brand identity design for Row House Cafe, Seattle (2011)
- Brand identity design for nightclub The Baltic Room, Seattle (2011)
- Naming, brand identity design for Hindsight Veterinary Care, Oregon (2011)
- Brand identity, naming and website for Matchbox Mobile (2008)
- Brand identity design for Joji Minatogawa Architects Inc, Seattle (2007)
- Brand identity design for Group3 Architects LLC, Seattle (2006)
- Brand identity design for Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce, Seattle (2006)
- Total rebrand for a Seattle newspaper, Northwest Asian Weekly, Seattle (2007)
Have a project in mind ?
Contact us through the form here to get started.
20 years of DK..
All the things we’ve done before inform what we do today. Read about our experiential learning program design work, of late, and read our story from its origins, at this page >