Name: Cameron Woo
Company: Cameron Woo Design
Position within company: Principal
Tell us a little about your background in design
I earned a formal education from the University of Technology, Sydney. I worked for a reputable Sydney designer and interned with an Architectural firm; eventually managing a number of high-end interior schemes at a Senior level. People began to ask me to do various work on a freelance basis. Slowly I began to build up my clientele and eventually decided to set up my own firm and provide interior design services. I soon earned a reputation in the industry as the ‘go to’ person by Architects and Clients to collaborate with, particularly in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.
How would you describe your personal interior design style?
Personally, I like to mix the old with the new at home. Professionally, I design for different people, who come from different regions and cultures, countries. People don’t come to me for my personal style. They come to me because of our methodology and approach to the design, which is very cerebral. We approach it in an intellectual way, and this is manifested in our work.
Where does your design inspiration come from?
It depends on the project. For instance, if I am working on a project in Indonesia, I would take inspiration from something which brings a sense of context that is appropriate. But my end goal is to create an international look of luxury which expresses a whole new lifestyle, an experience; from the napkin details, floral settings to the plans, layouts. As observed by one of our developer clients, “Your work is very layered”.
In what direction do you feel that design is moving towards in a general sense?
I came across an article where the writer, who is not associated with the design industry, discusses an international style that is mimicked by many designers in all parts of the world. For instance, if one walked into a show house in Moscow, you could find the same accessories, architectural styles similar to the one you would see in Cape Town, or some place in the eastern seaboard of the USA. I think it is popular culture or Hollywood and the internet that perpetuates or depicts how people do live or would like to live or should live.
If you could offer one piece of advice when it comes to product design, what would it be?
In a broad sense, sustainability, functionality and durability. Apart from these aspects, the product should look stunning, be appealing and what I like to always say, beautiful. The product should draw an individual’s attention. There are many interesting products today in the market but they may not look beautiful. The products I design are not only functional but also beautiful. As I am working from Southeast Asia, I prefer to implement the native and the exotic aesthetic in my product design in a modern way. I create products which are luxurious and express a timeless quality, through the exploration and articulation of materials and finishes done in an interesting way. There are a lot of vernacular materials, finishes that are applied in ethnic architecture and design, and my take on this is giving these vernacular finishes an international sense of luxury and appeal by combining these finishes in an exotic way.
What projects are you currently working on?
Our firm is well known for private houses and residential developments. But I also want to continue my exploration in product design, as many Clients have commented that we do it very well. There is enormous scope in the market and I want to provide beautiful products from this part of the world which incorporates native and exotic materials and finishes with an internationally level of quality and craftsmanship.
Final thoughts; tell us a little more about yourself
Your favourite holiday destination?
Always the next one. Designers are Renaissance people who are always looking for new and enlightened experiences. A place where I would revisit all the time from a relaxation point of view is Bali. And a place where I feel energized by is London and New York. However, the place where I feel where there is unique sense of cultural identity in modern Asia is Bangkok.