Meet the Founder
I began working professionally with lighting in 2013, as an engineer in automotive interior lighting. Here I was introduced to photometry, LED driver electronics, optical design & simulation, plastic injection molding, and the illumination engineering community. After two years, I transferred to a position in automotive exterior lighting, which added the challenges of UV and environmental exposure, regulatory photometric requirements, reflectors & projectors.
While woodworking has always been a hobby of mine, it wasn't until recent years that I've accumulated enough tools, equipment, and mentors to practice fine woodworking. The drifting design concepts of my hobby and profession began to crash & combine. I began drawing wooden pieces with material removed and replaced with poured epoxy resin. The proof of concept pieces that I built appeared as imagined, and drove further inspiration. Next, I was making custom pieces with unconventional methods, learning many methods that don't work for each method that does.
With a handful of proven methods of manufacture, I started designing pieces within the restraints of manufacturability which were learned in prototyping. A beautiful design is incomplete if it cannot be made. A base design was refined to be the Latimore, which would later become my minimal viable product for opening the online shop.
The feedback and demand received from the few installations of the Latimore design inspired me to check the market for similar art. In my perusal of the luxury lighting market, a seed of opportunity was planted, a dream was created. More market research led to sturdier confidence that my designs could have prominent positions in this market. The decision to enter this market came gradually & naturally, more of an evolution of a concept rather than the typical steered objectives of a business. My analysis of this opportunity was so strongly compelling, that resisting would be disloyal to myself.
- To design & produce art which is exclusively original and of finest quality.
- To support the local community and economy.
- To operate responsibly & sustainably.
I plan to expand to a dedicated workshop / brick & mortar in downtown Detroit when the business case is supported by demand. I will hire locally, acquire materials locally, and spend locally. Profits will support the employees & community, and maintain the business. This business has a unique market position by operating this way, while much of the competition outsources their manufacturing, sacrifices build quality, and uses cheap materials to cut costs. Strake studio will never sell out like this, because profit is not purpose.
I hope that I can create an opportunity to share the dream with you. Thanks for reading.
Founder – Strake Studio