Designer insights with Karin Jeske

Karin Jeske is the co-owner and designer at Tesselle, which is based in Riverside, California. Karin has developed a product range that includes a range of exclusive tile designs. All of her products are eco-friendly and are produced without kiln firing. Her encaustic cement tiles offer modern patterning using a centuries-old hand-made manufacturing technique, and her silacrete line features a high-tech concrete/glass composite material that has a printable surface. So we are proud to bring you the Designer Insights of Karin Jeske.

Designer Insights - Karin Jeske

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1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic?

Most of my current designs are based on the concept of a non-repeating pattern created with a single design module, which results in a patterning that has a very organic feel.

2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process?

A concept usually starts in my head, leading to dozens of iterations “on paper” before I finalize.  My workspace includes pens, paintbrushes, cameras, scanners, prints and a computer with all sorts of specialized software.

3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most?

The architects, interior designers and the homeowners who specify our products are my greatest inspiration, and they motivate me to continue creating new concepts.  Their abilities to envision Tesselle Tiles as part of their 3 dimensional design always amazes me. Seeing a product that I designed or collaborated on in an installation that will be in place long after I am gone is extraordinarily satisfying.

4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired?

I exercise without distractions to focus on solving a particular problem, or I look at the work of creative people in other fields to get my juices flowing.

5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps?

I studied textile design in college, and followed up with a mid-career MBA.  Most of my work has involved developing fashion-oriented products, analyzing their performance, and applying what I learn to the next generation. New technologies that have developed over the course of my career have allowed faster prototyping, but the process of iterating and perfecting has remained the same. My advice would be to develop both creative and analytical skills.