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Posted 26.04.18

Product Design student creates iconic design for Plymouth Gin

By Phillip Buchan

Ruth Matthews of Design Soda, Amateur Mixologist Matt Hollidge, Plymouth College of Art student Lewis Ryan, and Plymouth Gin Brand Director Karnen Ehrlich

Lewis McCulloch Ryan has been announced as the winner of a design challenge set by Plymouth Gin to create a new iconic drinking vessel, scooping a £1,000 prize fund and the opportunity to have his design put into production.

The competition, a collaboration with Plymouth College of Art, saw 15 finalists from our BA (Hons) Product Design & Innovation and BA (Hons) 3D Design Crafts programmes compete during a live final at the distillery.

“The creativity expressed throughout this competition has been incredibly impressive."

– Sean Harrison, Master Distiller at Plymouth Gin

Known for supporting local makers in the city, Plymouth Gin tasked our design students with an exciting brief that would help inspire creativity. Expert judges Ruth Matthews of ‘Design Soda’ and the ‘Amateur Mixologist’ Matt Hollidge travelled from London to help Master Distiller Sean Harrison and Brand Director Karen Ehlirch from Plymouth Gin to pick a winner. Each design was judged on the inspiration behind the vessel and how it best represented the authentic and hand-crafted gin.

Lewis McCulloch Ryan's winning prototype

Winning student, Lewis McCulloch Ryan, said: “I was inspired from the Ocean City’s coastline, paired with stainless steel that can be sourced from old warships and submarines when old steel gets put onto the open market from the Royal Navy.”

The BA (Hons) Product Design & Innovation programme combines physical and digital product design with an understanding of contemporary shifts in sustainable, ethical and open design principles in order to train the designers of the future.

Sean Harrison, Plymouth Gin’s Master Distiller said: “The creativity expressed throughout this competition has been incredibly impressive. It’s exciting to see how local makers interpret their city and the spirit of Plymouth Gin. Although we are renowned internationally, we still produce gin in the heart of Plymouth so it’s exciting to have developed this new drinking vessel design with local talent.” 

Judges examine work by Plymouth College of Art students

Kevin Jenkins, BA (Hons) Product Design & Innovation Programme Leader, said: "We're incredibly proud of the students, especially as they are all still in their 1st year. They presented their designs with confidence and had good attention to detail within the parameters of the brief provided."

“In the process, the students have rapidly developed their specialist design and production skills, especially in CAD and rendering, but also in the research towards and presentation of projects. The whole process and collaboration has been very rewarding. We’re looking forward to supporting the development of the design into production."