How KAMP.Studio is using 3D printing to bring diversity to the lighting market

Daniel Kamp’s lighting studio is back at it again with a new range of customisable lights called Layer. The idea: Use 3D printing to disrupt the lighting industry by creating interchangeable design options, moving away from usual mass production of items and into made-to-order, bespoke products for the home.

Kamp was once part of design trio YS Collective as a director, and later founder and creative director for award-winning design studio Think & Shift. He went on to found in 2016 to hone in on his passion for experimental design and 3D printing.

The studio is based in New Zealand but has work spread throughout the Asia-Pacific region. Its latest collection in White Light by KAMP features a family of digitally crafted lights called Layer. It was designed in New Zealand by Kamp and designer Brandon Aitken, and then 3D printed in New York City.

The idea behind the collection? Simplicity with options, Kamp says. The light fixture’s design is interchangeable and can be altered over time without the need to rewire the electrics, due to the customisation component.

 Kamp says he didn’t want it to be obvious that the lights were 3D printed. Instead, the lights had to look and feel sophisticated.

However, he says the Layer range shows how new technologies such as 3D printing can be used to bring more creativity to the lighting market.

“My background in interior design taught me that it can be really hard to find unique pieces, without the time and cost usually attached to custom commissions,” he says.

“Layer is a system designed to give you the uniqueness of ‘custom’, with the ease and affordability of ‘off-the-shelf.’”

This isn’t his first rodeo at 3D printing either, as Kamp has worked extensively with the technology in the last two or so years in Kamp.Studio.

“We’ve made objects of all sorts and that research has given me a really deep knowledge of the possibilities and constraints of the technology,” he says. “I have a passion for post-industrial fabrication as I think it unlocks a lot of doors for design and business alike.

“In the case of White Light, 3D printing enables us to create a large range with hundreds of variations, without the normal financial and environmental costs of production and warehousing (everything is made on demand). This means we can add more and more options over time – and we plan to.”

He says the previous lighting range he designed, the Porcelain Pendant, had a similar end goal in mind to offer with customisable shapes. However, when it was presented to designers and architects, he found that while they liked the idea of being able to customise the light’s shape, the process turned out to be complex.

“So we headed back down into the design dungeon for six months and emerged with a family of lights that is customisable and simple at the same time,” he says.

The major challenge with the Layer series was deciding what direction to take the products in he says. Because of the ease of the technology, it meant the possibilities for the design were endless. Kamp says there were hundreds of iterations before they decided on a select number.

“Because of the technologies we are using, the possibilities are endless so, while we plan to add a lot more to the family over time, we had to settle on what to do first. It was and exercise in restraint,” he says.

The Layer range is available now, with several more variations going to be released in the coming months.

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