Back Zhou Jingkuan - Founder of Shenzhen Left and Right Packaging Design
At the beginning of Left and Right, you are providing both creative design and packaging production services. What do you think is the challenge for a company that provides multiple services?
Our service including packaging design and manufacturing. However, in China, if you are a manufacturer, it’s very difficult to charge your client design fees matching the design value, as they only see you as a manufacturer. The biggest challenge, in the beginning, was to prove our client that we can make an exquisite gift box and provide outstanding creativity for the design. Fortunately, through constantly participating in international competition and win awards, we’ve changed the client’s perspective on us and let them know we are a professional design company, which help us to collaborate with more brands who appreciate the value of good design.
Where did your inspiration for your design come from?
Design is like the air, that I can’t live without, it’s part of my life. No matter where and when I always look for inspiration from what I see and hear in my daily life and put them into my little black book. It’s like a secret weapon which helps me to come up with ideas.
Why do you want to enter the award?
Pentawards is the most authoritative award in packaging design, it’s like the Oscar of packaging design. It means a lot for a packaging designer. For me, design is an endless learning path, you must always learn and improve your professional knowledge in order to go further. Participating in Pentawards can better verify whether your learning has progressed and accumulated design experience effectively. For the company, participating in the Pentawards and winning the award is a good way for the company to showcase its design strength. We can better get the attention of customers and gain more opportunities from potential clients.
Which design is your proudest one? Tell us its story!
Uncle Pig’s Old Bacon is my favourite design so far. It’s inspired by my own life experience; we can say that I am Uncle Pig. Old Bacon – the word has two meanings in China, one is pork that’s been cured and smoked, the other one refers to a mature man with stories. This packaging design links the meaning of both, it’s a story about how a baby pig grows into uncle pig and shows the process of making the hand-cured old bacon. This idea comes from my observation towards life and the inspirations I had in the little black book, which only took me three days to complete.
Since you started your company five years ago until now you have become a regular winner of Pentawards. What changes does the competition bring you?
The first time I won a bronze Pentaward was in 2014, the third year I had been working in packaging design since I left university. I often doubted my talent in design when I was working on some projects back then. Therefore, when I knew I became a winner of Pentawards, I was thrilled and gained more confidence in my design work. There were only 10 Chinese designers who won Pentawards in 2014, and I was the youngest independent designer among them all. That’s the moment my founding partner invited me to start the Left and Right Packaging Design with him. After that, I received one silver in 2015, a bronze in 2017 and this year I won two golds and one silver Pentaward. Because of Pentawards, I was assured that packaging design is my passion.
In Shenzhen, China is a major town for packaging design and production. How do you stay competitive?
Shenzhen is the design capital of China, especially for packaging design. Here we have many talented designers. I always look for the opportunity to network with them, which helps us exchange ideas and learn the most cutting-edge techniques or design concepts. This exchange allows me to stay up-to-date and always think out of the box. Long story short, the passion for learning is the only way that can help you stay competitive.