PEOPLEText: Satoru Tanno

The design team ‘Chman‘ who deals with interactive design on web in the north of France, Lille produced the cover graphic of this month.
They build up their original style with flash making use of characters based on on-line games. Why are they in Lille, not Paris. We interviewed about the style and stance.

First of all, please tell us who you are.

Before being a small company, Chman is a collective of creative designers who work on common projects. We work together, sharing our calpabilities with the same goal : positively driving the developpment of the new ways of communication. We are all convinced that the new technologies offer to the world big opportunities to exchange differently.

Can you tell us more about the activity of Chman?

Chman activities take place at the heart of multimedia. Indeed, we work both on animated designs and on sounds and music.
Chman activities can be divided in two parts. The multimedia production is the main one, and our only objective in the long term. Chman creates its own productions, which try to express our fully interactive vision of the web. Some of these productions can be sold to companies which want to give some fun to their web site.
Secondly, we propose web design services. At the moment, this is vital for Chman, because it generates some money to support our productions. Actually, our clients are France Telecom, IBM, Lotus…

What are your ideas on interactive design and which personal principles do you follow in creating a design?

As we said before, we are convinced that interactive design is very specific. Even if the experiences in print design, in broadcast, video games, etc.., are very present in our cultural backgrounds, the way of communicating through the new technologies has to be thought out. Every day be able to move ahead.

What are you most interested in right now?

Each of us in the chman team has different interests. One common point I think, is that we want all to share our vision with other people like in Japan. We have a lot to learn from the other cultures, and not only technological aspects, but human points of view too.

What do you think about working in the north of France, Lille?

We are very proud to be at Lille. Paris is very closed, 250 km, 58′ by TGV. London, Brussels and Amsterdam too. We are very often in Paris, and have a lot of friends there. But we have the best place, because we can enjoy four big European capitals and live our everyday life with the countryside quality. Come here to see us, u r welcome 🙂

Your office looks stunning in the picture. What do you think about working in such a beautiful envoironmet?

It’s necessary to work and create in positive vibes. One “creative laboratory”, one room to stay cool and chill out after long nights, and a garden to drink our coffee under the sun, or the rain.

We’d like to ask you about the web design in France in general. What’s hot in now?

For the french guy “Oeil pour Oeil“. A lot of things. As usual, we waked up very late, but now, there are a few structures which are very creative.

What do you think about Japan?

It’s a fascinating country. With so interesting ways of life. One of us, Tony, has japanese parents. And we have a big project for the end of summer 1999. We will cover the three techno-parades in Paris, in Berlin and…in Tokyo ! We are very impatient to discover this city; Good advises r welcome 🙂

The last question. What are your plans for the near future?

Our main objective is the success of Banja our new flash animated on line game which will be released for preview at the Milia, a big event around interactive contents at Cannes, in the South of France. And the release of Chman CD in March, with funky spacy musical colored interactive environments…

Text: Satoru Tanno

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