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Superyacht Design Symposium: 4 top designers discuss the value of concepts

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Richard Woolley

Design Director, SVO Land Rover

One of the hot topics up for discussion at the 2017 Superyacht Design Symposium was the value of concepts with four of the world's top designers giving their thoughts on the subject.

Richard Woolley, design director at SVO Land Rover, laid his cards on the table straight away, describing himself as a "huge advocate" of conceptual work. "I think it is the lifeblood of creativity," he added. "The question for me is how much you share that with a wider audience, or whether you keep that within your team. Not every concept has to be a successful concept. To push the boundaries, sometimes you have to fail. If you succeed all the time, you're not trying hard enough — that is a great mantra to have in terms of conceptual work.

"Concept design is something that can inspire other designers, it's a domino effect — it can have ramifications throughout many different disciplines. The Pompidou Centre in Paris is a great example. The designers admitted that when their submission was chosen they had no idea how it would be realised."

Giving an example from his career, Woolley added, "The LRX concept went on to become the Range Rover Evoque and that fundamentally changed the business. We didn’t know how we could deliver it and there were many skeptics within the business, but it’s gone on to be the fastest selling and biggest selling model in the brand’s history, bringing in a whole new tranche of customers."

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