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Sean Ennis and Angus McIntosh

Interview

What is your ideal office?


Anywhere with casual Fridays and dust extraction. But seriously, somewhere we can safely and effectively create and also take care of business. But also slam beers and shoot the cans with a BB gun if that’s what we want to do. Our office has lately become the job site or a hotel lobby. We usually meet with clients somewhere comfortable over coffee, discuss the project and then live on-site until the project is finished. 

 

What is an object that has made a remarkable impression on you?


For us it’s all about the right tool, whether that be a saw or a good hammer. We have dorked out over a well-engineered pencil.  

 

What was the last profound experience you shared?

 

We recently were between shops and needed a space to prep for a job. Our good friend Brook Klausing helped us out by sharing his space with us. He owns a design and landscaping company, they do amazing work. We were impressed at his generosity, his professionalism and especially how well-oiled his operation is. Thanks again Brook!  

 

How do you live an uncommon life?


I guess for us it’s being in control and managing our time. It’s nice being your own boss and not taking orders from anyone. This gives us the ability to live a healthy balance between work and play. No nine-to-five job, no time cards, just strictly productivity and clocking out.

 

What is your greatest mistake thus far?

 

Spending money, or more like not being businessmen going into this. We just wanted to create beautiful things and started doing that, then all the sudden you get sucker-punched with fees for licenses, permits, insurance and taxes. Fucking taxes. We had to learn that making art comes with a budget.

 

Are you enthralled by the tradition, history and symbolism of carpentry?


Enthralled is a big word for us. We both fell into this. You start working with your hands as a kid and you just learn through trial and error and all of a sudden you’re a nail pounder helping your friends build their retail stores and restaurants. We just love creating things and are fortunate to be able to make a living doing so.  

 

What makes wood such a versatile and timeless medium?


People have been using wood to build their furniture and homes forever. We know that people have this innate relationship or love for wood because it’s real or was alive. There’s a love affair between man and trees that plays out in furniture and other things we build with wood. You can make anything with it, it’s a part of life for us.  

 

How do you reconcile natural materials with modern, man-made spaces?


Most times it’s just letting the natural colors and grain in the wood play a role in the space. We construct and manipulate those natural materials into pieces for functionality. The wood speaks for itself.

 

How does the design of a physical space pervade the psyche of its inhabitants?


It’s all about programming and an ethos. Always form and function. The design is intended to direct physically and mentally. We create hierarchy and subliminally lead the person with the construction and aesthetic. The color palette and comfort of the space should change the emotion or feeling of the environment and sometimes that’s just making sure people know where to go and feel comfortable with what is happening.  

 

What is your highest aspiration as designers? 

 

We started Ennis McIntosh with the intention of having our own furniture line, a whole ensemble or collection. We hope to get that off the ground in 2015.
 

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