Somerset Times

My Personal Project - Ryan Chen

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Somerset Times Edition

Week 9, Term Two, 2020

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My name is Ryan Chen, and for My Personal Project I have designed and created four shoes with the hints of both my culture and personal expression. It all started back when my parents took me sneaker shopping for the need to participate in my school Physical Education lesson in Year 3.

Upon visiting the sneaker store and seeing the posters of great basketball players with the latest basketball shoes on them, ignited my interest to know more about the sneakers the top players wear. The more I studied about it, the more I started to appreciate the aesthetic of the style of shoes that made it into the top spot in the store. I knew that someone must have put a lot of thought into the design and the creation of it.

When I first started My Personal Project, my father introduced me to one of the great talented shoe designers of current time. Joe Davis is his name and he is the one who designed the ever so popular shoe style ‘Disrupter’ in the recent years, from Fila. He told me that the initial inspiration that inspired him to become a shoe designer back in 1992, was seeing his best friend getting a job at Fila and the desire of wanting to join his best friend. As one of the top talented painters and artists in his high school, he was awarded full scholarship to the Pratt Institute in New York, which is one of the leading institutes for raising young talent in industrial design. Joe also walked me through the entire journey of his experience in working in the shoe industry which was both inspiring and interesting.

It then came to the time for me to start the process of making my own creation. I was first at a lost as to where to start, luckily my father and his office of designers, as well as technicians who work at the sample making facility, guided me through the whole process. At first, I found it a little overwhelming but everything worked out in the end and I was happy with my first shoe collection that I created.

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