Creative design inspiration can really come from anywhere. My interior design inspiration for the bus has actually come from the exterior of the camper. Since owning this VW bus, I have become aware of something called ‘Kintsugi’ – The Japanese Art of recognizing beauty in broken things. It seems a really interesting and intriguing concept. It also feels really appropriate and kind of makes sense as to why I really appreciate its originality, the faded paint and various character marks from its use over time.
To me, the bus has a story. The story can be told through its imperfections, and in these imperfections, it has an inherent beauty. As the saying goes, you only get originality once. It would be relatively easy to paint it and make everything look perfect. Better than when it left the factory in Germany even! However doing this would rob it of its history, its character and the story of its life over in California and now over here in the UK. This is something I have no intention of doing anytime soon! Preservation, not restoration! 😉
Old not obsolete
Associated to Kintsugi is a Japanese aesthetic called Wabi-sabi which represents a Japanese world view centred on the acceptance of transience and imperfection – better through imperfection 🙂 I think this must be something I have a hidden intrinsic fascination by. My original source of inspiration was Graphic artist, printmaker and designer Anthony Burrill’s ‘I Like It. What Is It?’ letterpress poster which utilises traditional letterpress print and woodblock type. Apart from the charm of the traditional process, I love the worn imperfections associated with the age-worn, woodblock type.
However sometimes you have to break something to make something… is there a special kind of typographic Graphic Design hell for someone who cuts up a traditional letterpress print poster? So why have I cut it up? Its going to have a repurposed new life as part of my ideas for the interior design… all will be revealed soon! 😉
The interior design will consist of a mix of old and new, traditional and repurposed items. For the Westfalia inspired rear overhead ‘headbanger’ locker, I’ve refreshed a pair of original ‘dog bone’ hinges from my parts box from my old Canterbury Pitt interior bus. It will be a nice little heritage feature rather than buying new hinges. These were often used in Devon interiors (amongst others) as well as Canterbury Pitt conversions.
I found this old rusty original Triumph spanner in the bottom of a toolbox and thought this could be repurposed to become a useful feature in the interior in some way. I have a cunning plan for it…
My scalpel skills are getting a good work out at the moment! Apart from cutting up the Anthony Burrill poster, I also have a fascination and love of old maps. I have a selection of vintage world maps in various conditions, and think they will also make an interesting feature in the new interior in some way…
However, where necessary, there will also be some new bits. I wanted to get some cool aluminium trim for the edge of my forthcoming table design. The really helpful guys at Camper Interiors carry some excellent VW Devon aluminium table edge trim and colour insert which should be perfect for my needs. They also have a great range of fixtures, fittings, accessories and hard to find parts. I’m sure I will be using them again in the near future!
A quick spin in a V8 Aston Martin Vantage
As a bit of a break from all this interior work, I had a late Christmas present sneak up on me. My youngest daughter Sky had very kindly bought me a driver experience session with a 4.2 litre V8 Aston Martin Vantage convertible 🙂 Apparently 390 bhp, top speed of 190 mph and 0-60 in 4.9 sec! Quite a change from the split-screen bus that’s for sure!
It gave us a good excuse to have a little 160-mile road trip together in the bus and a day out which was great! I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot for Aston Martins so it really was a dream come true to actually drive one! Unfortunately, it was all over a bit too quickly, but I really enjoyed the experience. That said, not sure I’d swap it for the bus, but it would make a great second car!