PerhapsLabs is dedicated to the pursuit of experimentation-driven design. Through trial and error, questioning the limits of form, and the willingness to play and explore, to fail and start over, the object takes shape. The story of making something should be as interesting as the object itself.

Want something you see here? Want something you have never seen?

My new site cottinghamstudio.com (a work in progress)

Contact: cottinghamstudio@gmail.com


Some prefer clean, controlled lines, rendering and mass production. Others create things slowly over time, allowing design to evolve, working with hands not computers, embracing forces of chance. Both methods are valid, and can produce stunning work. I have chosen the latter.

I had spent the better part of the year committed to exploring this method of design and making, focused on design by drip - a blend of chaos and control.

Inspired by the formation of stalactites, I set out on a experimental path and fell upon the idea of dripping and accumulation. This method would allow the drip to grow as if it had a life of its own outside of my control. As each drop of wax fell it would settle and harden as it pleased. It was more like a balancing act than my other work, and I was more an observer of the process. The end result was then cast in metal with almost no intervention to the shapes that gravity had made. The name Oroboros refers to the symbol of the snake eating its tail, both creation and destruction, an endless cycle of life and death. This name sums up both the why and the how that led to the making of this collection.

chair, 29" high, 29" deep, 22" wide
lamp, 38" long, 10" diameter
table, 14" tall, 18" diameter

Contact me, cottinghamstudio@gmail.com for inquiries.

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One issue I have with using renderings when doing custom work for clients is that if it looks too real they expect the final product to look exactly the same. Too rough they loose faith. Real materials often behave differently than those in renderings. The wood can vary, the finish may have a bit more gloss, or be more matte, the colors can be similar, but not quite the same. Sometimes the method of construction can change from the model to the final product; you don't need screws to hold a 3D render together.
So to counter this I have started to blend the raw sketch up with the rendered file. This gives a hint of real, with a healthy blend of "sketchiness". While there are plenty of times when photo realistic renderings are key in selling a pitch, I find that managing expectations and sending photos of the real thing in process does far more to satisfy most clients than a perfect rendering ever could.

Inspired by a 1937 “class of multi-symmetric polyhedra” introduced by Michael Goldberg and published by Joseph D. Clinton. I will be making these with a 1/8th inch thick plywood that has a copper leaf backing. The individual parts will be attached with copper rings.

I was asked to work with a designer from Glow Studio to fabricate these two lovely lights for the I. Martin bike shop in Los Angeles. The parts were all provided by the shop and I only had to make just a few small adjustments from the original design.

I have been living a stones throw away from the Adirondacks now for about 4 months, so I have been exposed to a lot of what one might call "rustic" furniture that you don't see a lot in Los Angeles. That got me thinking about wood. Then in my usual blog pilfering I ran across a short documentary about Sam Maloof. So naturally I ran out and got myself some good ol' Douglas Fir and started carving. I plan on following this up with an endless series of ever evolving chairs, tables and lamps. I will update here as I go.

I am using these chairs in my dinning room, but I can see a chair like this easily fitting in the corner of most any room. Kind of an occasional chair, functioning as a table for those magazines you can't bring yourself to throw out, until that odd occasion when you suddenly have someone new in your space that takes your usual seat. They can be stained any shade you may desire and even painted if you are so inclined. Each chair takes about a week to complete.