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About Nicola Zanetti

Segno Inverso is an Italian research, strategy, innovation, and design firm with a 10-year experience professionals. The team consists of accomplished international freelance strategists, designers, researchers, engineers and business professionals who work collaboratively, synergistically and effectively. The team can achieve highly specialized results thanks to abilities of single freelance that we hire on specific brief. We think it is the teamwork with a good supervision that permits to achieve highest results. Moreover they think a flexible organization can be succesfull between the need of a good design and the budget limits. The purpose of their activity is offering a complete range of services from product design to brand communication, thanks to different experiences and skills.

Interview with Nicola Zanetti

Nicola Zanetti ("NZ") interviewed on Thursday, 5 April.

Could you please tell us about your experience as a designer, artist, architect or creator?

NZ : It's already more than 15 years I work as a designer with experiences in small design offices as well as in famous product company (Bialetti group), toreach my own design company with offices in different countries. I am curious and I like to be involved in different matters around the product, from design to manufacturing and sell.

How did you become a designer?

NZ : I started in Milan design offices as a Junior designer and moved soon to a big italian manufacturing company that helped me to reach a technical skill that I use everyday in my projects. Once I opened my design studio I started to work with China and I also started to buy and sell goods that helps me to design new products that are good sellers on international markets.

What are your priorities, technique and style when designing?

NZ : I think that new designers have the time and ability to learn new softwares quickly while old ones don't have the time to follow every year the improvements and changes of each software. That's why I think the main tools we should use is our knowledge and immagination. To communicate to our clients we need to use nice renderings and 3D tools but this is something we need to understand and not really use, since we should always find some other to do that job.

Which emotions do you feel when designing?

NZ : Actually design is not art, so I think there is no real emotion while working on a product but I feel there is more thinking and evaluation of different aspects. It's hard to create while I think our work is to improve. Design is a passion, so I feel lucky to do what I like and I feel proud everytime I see the real product I designed, on the shelf or in some friend's house.

What particular aspects of your background shaped you as a designer?

NZ : I had a passion for design since I was a child. I always liked to draw and paint before and as time passed I saw that I liked to imagine and draw new shapes and new solutions, so I studied engineering and then design and I found my way.

What is your growth path? What are your future plans? What is your dream design project?

NZ : I am building an international design firm that already have office in Italy, Argentina, China and Korea. Next step will be to consolidate these offices business and to move to create our own brand on the product market, starting with small appliances and simple products.

What are your advices to designers who are at the beginning of their career?

NZ : just be open and courious. Never say no to a new experience, grow yourself and your knowledge together with your ambitions.

You are truly successful as a designer, what do you suggest to fellow designers, artists and architects?

NZ : Just do your best, this is always the best target. Seriously speaking, I think like in every business a stating investment is needed to make something real, otherwise it will be very hard to achieve great results.

What is your day to day look like?

NZ : Daily routine is quite boring since tons of mails need to be checked and replied, a lot of small details changes for already finished projects to work on, some meetings tu update everyone on ongoing projects...what I really liek is the starting phase of new projects and meet new opportunities and , for sure, sign new contracts.

How do you keep up with latest design trends? To what extent do design trends matter?

NZ : Today is quite easy to be updated on new trends and design style since a lot of informations can be foind on internet but I feel that the best way os to visit some good eshibitions and touch by hands new products.

How do you know if a product or project is well designed? How do you define good design?

NZ : Actually I think that a good design should be user friendly and fitting user needs. I personally don't like some pure shapes that are hard to use and not easy to understand even if they are beautiful. I am more on function than shape but outlook is also an important matter since is what usually we look at to choose a product.

How do you decide if your design is ready?

NZ : A design is ready when the client needs to go on production! I would always like to improve or change a design and unfortunately everytime I look at an old projec I think I should have done better.

What is your biggest design work?

NZ : One thing I like, is when through a product you help a company to grow. Kalerm and Dr Coffee are two examples of new companies that reached in short time the first position on the local market thanks to the product quality and design. But I think design is not only about shape and usability, is also a tool to find new solutions and I'd like to mention also that I used the "design thinking" to draw a contract between two companies that wan't able to work together without a "design thinking" approach.

Who is your favourite designer?

NZ : Dieter Rams. nothing to add , this is the n.1.

Would you tell us a bit about your lifestyle and culture?

NZ : I move between Korea, China and Italy and this helps me a lot in discover new ideas and opportunities. I liek to listen to music when working on a design project and I think it is needed a sharing moment but also a private creation time.

Would you tell us more about your work culture and business philosophy?

NZ : People comes first. I don't care how good you are in design or business, I want to work with friends and have a happy life.

What positive experiences you had when you attend the A’ Design Award?

NZ : Design awards are a good advertisement for young designers but also a good selling point for Design companies while you meet new clients. A' design award was a great exeprience, specially during the ceremony on Como lake.

Nicola Zanetti Profile

Magic stone Aroma diffuser

Magic stone Aroma diffuser design by Nicola Zanetti


F11 Automatic Coffee Machine

F11 Automatic Coffee Machine design by Nicola Zanetti


G2 Face Recognition Security Device

G2 Face Recognition Security Device design by Nicola Zanetti


Shine Painting Spray Gun

Shine Painting Spray Gun design by Nicola Zanetti


YD 32 Ultrasonic Humidifier

YD 32 Ultrasonic Humidifier design by Nicola Zanetti

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