We can take a lot of ideas from nature, but sometimes the source of inspiration can be our own selves. The human figure, after all, is a truly complex design, and it’s capable of portraying a wide range of forms and emotions. Sometimes, that spark even comes from the most mundane of situations, like sitting on a park bench or walking under the rain with an umbrella. The latter is apparently what gave birth to a rather cute little lamp designed to stand on your desk, table, or shelf, generating a sense of playfulness and calm, emotions that some people feel on a rainy day.
Designer: Heeyeol Yang
Different people associate rainy days with different emotions. Some feel lethargic and sleepy while others are their most productive in the midst of the pitter-patter. Some feel a bit of anxiety, especially when trapped under the rain, but there are actually those who can stay still and calm while standing under an umbrella. This is the inspiration for Rain Man, a concept design for a lamp that is truthfully more open to interpretation than what the designer intended.
On the one hand, the name alone directly points to the form that the lamp tries to imitate. The flat cone on top is like an umbrella, while the lever that supports it is the figure’s arm. The lamp itself is an extreme generalization of the human head, and plenty of metaphors can probably be drawn from how a person’s face and presence can light up those gloomy, rainy days.
At the same time, it’s also possible to see the figure a bit differently if you don’t take the name into consideration. The umbrella becomes a wide-brimmed hat commonly found in Asian countries, held high in greeting when coming across another person. In either interpretation, the focus is on the human figure and its relationship with its surroundings, be it rain or shine.
The concept design has other interesting features beyond its anthropomorphic shape. The umbrella (or hat) can be lowered or raised as desired, scattering the light or focusing it toward a single direction. Overall, the lamp has a certain charm that makes it a lovely piece for your living space, greeting you and your visitors with a simple, calm gesture.