Louis Minnaar, the force behind Louis Minnaar Creative Visual Design, combines wood and contemporary laser-cutting to create LIG – a new range of innovative lighting solutions. Made from laser-cut compressed wood, the pieces, like a jig-saw puzzle, fit together to form a three-dimensional lamp. We chat to the creative behind the contemporary lamps about his foray into product design.
You're already a talented visual creative, what made you branch out into home decor?
I studied Visual Communication with a major in Video at the Open Window Academy. I guess it wasn't a real definitive decision to move into product design. I had some left over corrugated cardboard from building props. One day I started building 3D puzzles just for the fun of it and then I saw the potential.
Have your other skills helped in the lighting design process?
Yes, tremendously. I have also been sculpting from a young age, so the developemnet of my 3D spacial perception has contributed quite a lot.
What inspired LIG?
I like to think of LIG as something more than just something that casts light. In general I like the idea of light and how it drives away the dark – so I guess that was the idea behind the name. Light will always be a symbol for something positive and healthy – which I value greatly.
How do you create each of your lamps?
Firstly, I design the shapes using corrugated cardboard by building a prototype. I then do a vector template drawing of the pieces, measure out angles and joints, and then have it cut with a laser.
What effect does the material and process you've chosen add to the product?
The secondary rays (light rays bounced from surfaces) bounce off the yellowish wood, which gives the entire lamp quite a warm feeling.
What is the concept behind LIG lamps?
I think the concept lies in the final product. What you see is what it was meant to be. I like the idea of using organic shapes, like leaves and branches and stylising them. I guess the running theme is wood.
Are there new LIG products on the horizon?
Yes, I have already started designs on a couple of new products. I have a great idea for chandeliers.