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A shley Willard

In du s t r i a l D es ig n Por t folio S pr i n g 2020





2018 - Present

Junior Designer Normann Copenhagen

Summer 2017

Product Design Internship Block Design

Summer 2016

Product Design Internship

Northumbria University

An Industrial Design graduate of Northumbria University, Ashley approaches projects from a playful and hands on perspective. The results are tangible products and experiences sensitive to their place and purpose. He has industry experience at global design brands Normann Copenhagen and Block Design as well as at established design consultancy Matter, working on live briefs for clients and markets around the world.

2014 - 2018

Relevant Skills

First class degree BA Design for Industry

Hitchin Boys’ School

2007 - 2014

A - Product Design B - Geography B - Mathematics 13 GCSE’s A-C

Industry experience 14 months in a professional postgraduate design role at Matter, plus 6 month internships as part of the in house design teams at both Normann Copenhagen and Block Design. Experience with professional, studio-based photography, post production and graphical editing for use in industry relevant publications such as ELLE Decoration. Involvement in the design, construction and manning of exhibition stands at global design shows; New Designers London, New York Now and Design Junction London. Confidence meeting and liaising with international clients and manufacturers on the production of CAD drawings and working prototypes. Winner of Ice Wine packaging competition in collaboration with Hualande Winery, China. Live projects in collaboration with the Royal Society of Arts, Phillips, the Lexus Design Award, Mind charity, Peacocks Medical Group and Design innovation in Plastics award.



Instagram: awillardid



i ii

Current Role


2017 Internship


2016 Internship


Day + Dusk lamps




Hualande Packaging


Interactive lighting


H ie r a rch ica l f o r m s


I n t h e m a kin g




Day + Dusk lamps, pg.14


Curre n t R ole


16 months (ongoing) Design role at Matter, a multidisciplinary design consultancy based in Bath. A broad client list has given me the opportunity to work in many industries, across office and education furniture, future scoping for global FMCG brands and support getting start ups to market. This role has allowed me to progress my skills in all areas of the design process but particularly strengthen my front end, strategy and research skills, giving stronger grounding and reasoning to my work. I have also been able to contribute and develop a strong suite of visualisation skills: photographic, model making and 3D renders / animations, key to the communication of initial ideas and final proposals.

Studio photography by Chris Tirrell with supporting art direction from myself



Selected Client List: Herman Miller P&G Gillette Xeros Mars Wrigley Heineken



I joined Matter at a time of inflection and foresight; exploring how we can grow our already loyal and successful client list. Part of this development included a refresh of our identify and outward look and feel. Internally and alongside experts, we explored tweaks to the logotype, tone of voice, photographic and presentation styles. I was a contributor to the Matter brand guidelines as well as a key support to the art direction and photography of the newly renovated studio space. The result is a cohesive and honest identity that is a true reflection of our collective talent as designers, thinkers and makers. The culmination of a new site and photography is due to launch this spring.


2017 In te rn sh ip



“Ashley has worked as intern for 6 months, both independently and as a member of a team; he is result oriented with a good feeling for quality and process. He takes initiative and carries out tasks in an elegant manner, often arriving at solutions that were not initially obvious. Normann Copenhagen has been very happy with Ashley’s professional attitude and understanding of design and construction� Simon Legald / Chief Designer


Whilst at Normann Copenhagen I was integrated into the in-house design studio led by chief designer Simon Legald. Here I was assigned a number of projects to expand the Normann range, working independently as well as in collaboration with colleagues and external design studios I was responsible for pieces across furniture, lighting and accessories from research and ideation through to concept refinement and rapid prototyping. Two product lines I designed for the 2018 Normann x Tivoli collection have made it to production and are stocked worldwide: Tale figures [Below] and Pond Bowls [Next]. My duties extended beyond the design process as I was trusted to solely represent Normann Copenhagen on a visit to clients in both the Czech Republic and Australia for quality control measures.



Pond Bowls for Normann Copenhagen


2016 In t ern sh i p


During this time I was able to greatly develop my skills in the complete design process including gaining strong research and development qualities. This led to the production of a number of new product lines whilst I was at the company including an origami inspired wall clock range [Next] and a colour-led perpetual calendar. A small team environment allowed me to learn from and influence all areas of the business from concept through to prototyping, manufacture and distribution. I was also strongly involved in branding and photography for Block, gaining the experience and confidence to eventually style and produce the autumn/winter product brochure and produce content for use in ELLE Decoration magazine. Outside of the studio I got the chance to work on exhibitions for internationally renowned trade shows NY Now and Design Junction.


“Ashley was an extremely valuable member of our team for 6 months, he worked well collaboratively but was also self motivated and organised when working on his own. He often initiated projects and was confident at taking it through from concept to development. He was involved in a lot of our design processes and successfully liaised with manufacturers, he has a natural aptitude for branding and a very good eye for photography. We all thoroughly enjoyed working with Ashley.� Tara Ashe / Lead Designer


Stand visuals for Design Junction, London

Origami Wall Clocks for Block


Day + Du sk lamp s

Reconsidering our current approach to interior lighting design - taking cues from daylight to encourage greater interaction and consideration.


defining daylight Natural light has the unique ability to improve our well being and state of mind, but its characteristics are often lost in artificial lighting. One key property I identified is the hue of daylight; it can have a profound effect on our state of being. Research has proven that warm tones instil tranquillity whilst cooler hues stimulate the senses and promote concentration. This is a trick often applied to large scale interior lighting and something I wanted to capture in a piece of more personal, consumer lighting design.


Through further observations and research I found that current trends in lighting design have lead to over-illumination of spaces and a lack of consideration for light. Diffusion is therefore a key characteristic of natural light, turning the harsh beams of daylight into a much softer ambient glow. Inspired by the Shoji screens in Japanese architecture, I experimented with various papers and films to try to capture this, settling for machine made Kozuke paper for its uniformity and tactility.


concept A pair of luminaries with a consistent design language but that each emit different light temperatures. One a subtle blue to represent daylight and to promote concentration and one a deep sunset orange hue for relaxation. Through a dimming mechanism the user would interact with each lamp and simultaneously the lamps would interact with and oppose with each other via a wireless connection, dimming one lamp would brighten the other and vice versa. Therefore a conscious balance of light temperature would be achieved depending on the users state of being and task at hand.



delivery The forms draw inspiration from the motion of the sun in the sky; the warmer dusk lamp an elongated circle to represent it falling gradually below the horizon and the cooler day lamp representative of the full orb of a midday sun. This gives the two lamps their own character whilst still sharing a cohesive design language so as to appear as a pair.


Each lamp was constructed from a grade of Aluminium most suitable to machining. This allowed me to fabricate the majority of the components in the workshop myself. The only exception was the hoops to mount the LED’s into, which I outsourced to a local company. The completed pieces were finished in a deep grey powder coat so as to give a sophisticated feel to the products whilst not distracting from the delicate hues of the light.




day + dusk lamps Paired lamps that employ the changing hues of daylight: a cool white day lamp for productive tasks; and a warmer, more sedative dusk lamp to help instil the tranquillity to unwind. A limited quantity of light must be consciously shared between the two sources to suit the user’s state of being. Challenging the archetype of a lamp, this provokes a more considered and efficient approach to lighting design, challenging current trends of overuse and under appreciation.



Ambient mode; the two light sources are in equilibrium, creating a well balanced environment of cool and warm light for general living.

Day lamp priority; a stimulating cool light of 5000K is prominent for increased productivity.

Dusk lamp priority; a warmer, 3000K light hue is more sedative to suit tranquil tasks such as reading or relaxing.


[Above] Dusk Lamp detail and tranquil setting [Right} Day Lamp in productive environment



Hoop + LED housing

Dial Base top

Base housing

Rotary encoder Arduino micro Wireless transceiver Step down converter

Base cover

8mm M4 machine screw


Interaction with the lamps is initially intuitive, the user drawn to the familiar form of a dial which dims and brightens the light and also acts as an on/off switch via a simple click. However, the relationship between user and product is much deeper as the two lamps communicate wirelessly and oppose each other; dimming one will brighten the other and vise versa. This playfully prompts discovery and a greater consideration of what quantity and quality of light is required for a task as there is a finite amount to be shared between the two.



[Left] Day + Dusk lamps on display at New Designers degree show, London. [Below] Part 1 of a two part major project log book. These publications cover the entirety of the project from initial insights through concept generation and sketch modelling to final prototyping. Both Part 1 and 2 available upon request.


B alan ce

Freely interpret the theme of ‘balance’, exploring avenues that inspire a conceptual piece of interior lighting.


My project began by exploring the theme of balance in nature. This led me to draw inspiration from the vast evergreen forests in Northern Scandinavia, and the sporadic branching out of their wooden limbs and needles. I chose to produce a free-standing floor lamp as the general form and scale would allow me to express these influences and create a product that would be able to ‘branch out’, for visual effect as well as practical application.



Rasmus In both its form and function rasmus reflects the natural cantilever of tree branches. The lamp shade can be held in one of three positions, not by a fixed join but by its own weight and balance alone. The interaction is playful but remains simple and intuitive; the user is invited to approach the lamp through the familiar handle grip above the shade and subsequently raise or lower the light source to suit the context.


In keeping with the Scandinavian aesthetic I stripped the lamp back to only its essential components, two perpendicular dowels representing a trunk and a branch. By sliding the branch through the hole the user must find a visual and physical balance point, at which the shade will rest with ease. To maintain such a clean form and absence of cables the electrical components are hidden within the shade, the light switched on and off via a simple touch sensor on the back. This also allows the branch to be used independently as a torch.







9 5 7



1 2 3



35mm sycamore dowel 2mm spun aluminium base [TIG welded tube/powder coated] 19mm sycamore dowel


Aluminium capacitive on/off sensor


2mm spun aluminium [powder coated]


A23 12V battery


Bulb holder


12V COB LED bulb


3mm clouded acrylic diffuser



Hu a la n de pac kag i n g award

Winner of the internally run award to design the primary and secondary packaging for Hualande wineries Ice wine.




The bottle and packaging design draws influence from the unique production method of Hualande Ice Wine. A tactile frosting pattern has been applied to the bottom half of the glass, reminiscent of the frozen grapes that are harvested. There is strong and cohesive branding on all elements of the packaging, ensuring the iconic diamond Hualande logo is at the forefront. This is reinforced with the inclusion of high quality, extravagant material choices.


N orth e rn Li g h t i n g De si g n Award 2 0 1 7

A response to the 2017 Northern Lighting Design Award to create a semi-portable lighting product with an intuitive or tactile element.


I began by exploring how light evokes feelings of safety and security and how these properties translate to its role in navigation. This led me to study coastal lighthouses, specifically St Mary’s lighthouse at Whitley Bay, that has served the Northumberland coastline since 1898. I wanted to create a lamp that did justice to this landmark by capturing the different roles that light plays in our day to day lives.



The concept consists of two components; a cast concrete base/charger, visually grounded by taking a low flat form and the lighting element, a simple cylinder with a strip of LED’s to create a directional beam. When docked, the lamp can create an ambient glow by reflecting the light off a wall or surface. In hand, the piece can act as a task lamp or torch to light the way. I explored various forms and materiality that subtly reference St. Mary’s lighthouse to add character to the piece.



foam master

negative silicone mould

aggregate collected from Whitley Bay beach

cast concrete base


mary A portable, wirelessly charged lamp harnessing the navigational and impervious properties of light. Inspired by St Mary’s lighthouse on the Northumberland coast, the directional beam acts as a functional task light when held or placed upright, as well as an ambient lamp whilst prone, providing the user with a sense of warmth and security. The materials and forms have been considered to give a familiar and comforting tactility to the product, whilst the inclusion of natural found materials from the coast links the concept to it’s origins.



touch sensitive on/ off brass plate

LED mount + 10x LED’s

turned ash housing

acrylic diffuser

steel weight induction charging coil [receiver]

electronics; Arduino mini Li-po battery charging board

induction charging coil [transmitter]

cast concrete base

to mains



Hierarch ical forms

A set of four abstract figurines; form and scale have been explored to represent hierarchy. Shaped from medium density modelling foam.





I n th e makin g

Part of the internal team forging a direction for our 2018 graduate degree shows: Reveal (Newcastle) and New Designers (London). Together we delivered a coherent collective, stand design, publication and social media campaign.


in the making Design For Industry Northumbria University 2014-2018

Apercu Pro

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The culmination of 4 years hard work for the 53 strong group of 2018 Design for Industry graduates; In the making reflects each and everyone’s journey across countless projects and crit reviews. Always making and developing, the skills and relationships we’ve all built at the Design School have shaped us into the designers we are today, preparing us for our next steps into professional practice.


A paired back typeface and simple, supporting graphical elements highlight our honest approach and diversity of thinking. To elevate the brand beyond simply digital mediums, and to stay true to our handson background, we screen-printed various promotional materials in the Design School workshops and hand stamped the logo type onto every brochure cover.



The in the making brochure, produced in its entirety by our team, brought together all of the major projects by our year group. Each was given a consistent template to populate with their own words and imagery. It also served as a celebration of our 4 years at the Northumbria Design School, showcasing awards we’d won collectively and as individuals alongside words of thanks and praise from our tutors.


Four years in the making

This is a snapshot of work from a group of lovely students who the team and I have really enjoyed working with over the last four years. There has been a few tears and lots of laughter throughout! They have experienced a unique journey which has equipped them for their next. I wish them all great success and will look forward to hearing from them all in the future.

Rose Wong Programme Leader


Reconsidered Interactions

Ashley Willard

Day + dusk lamps

Reconsidered Interactions A more considered approach to familiar objects through re-framed interactions.

Paired lamps that employ the changing hues of daylight: a cool white day lamp for productive tasks; and a warmer, more sedative dusk lamp to help instil tranquillity.


A limited quantity of light must be consciously shared between the two sources to suit the user’s state of being. Challenging the archetype of a lamp, this provokes a more considered and efficient approach to lighting design, challenging current trends of overuse and under appreciation.

Capturing the subtleties of daylight to prompt a more considered approach to lighting design.


In the making stand at New Designers, London, 2018. We were proud to take every final year student and their major project to the show. The stand design was a simple rolling shelf construction allowing for easy assembly but with the space for every project to breathe. The exhibition was accompanied by the In in the making brochure.



Pho tog rap h y

A brief selection of personal photography; through architectural, product and portrait.


Studio Truly Truly at London Design Festival 2019


Normann Copenhagen Showroom, Copenhagen




Major project inspiration, Newcastle Upon Tyne


ARoS Gallery, Aarhus

HAY House / Muuto Showroom, Copenhagen

+ 4479 3 5 2 4 4 0 8 5 ashley L will ard @g

Profile for Ashley Willard

Ashley Willard / Industrial Design Portfolio  

Design Junior at Matter, Bath

Ashley Willard / Industrial Design Portfolio  

Design Junior at Matter, Bath