The COVID-19 pandemic had everyone taken aback and even taken a few steps back – be it in career, or life in general. It was not the easiest matter to survive during the outbreak of the pandemic, but we know that life will ultimately continue on – and in the design industry, the perseverance and faith of the designers in their own art and creation are the essences that kept the passion burning and the business ongoing despite these uncertain times. That is why the following studio interviews piqued the question of managing design work during the pandemic – take a read at what keeps them running their studio in the new norm, and how they stay optimistic despite the challenges.


Mann Lao, Chiii Design

Q: How are you holding up? How did the pandemic affect your work or studio operations?
Pandemic changed the way of communication between people, and this is the biggest influence for us. It is a challenge for the new design era to convey and understand simple messages in the absence of body language; without getting along, without direct contact.


Q: What lessons, if any, have you learned during the pandemic?
It would be the ability to adapt to new circumstances, fit in the constantly evolving environment and technology, and at the same time not getting yourself lost.

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Q: What are you most grateful for these days?
I am excited that opportunities appear in a new form and reach me. Recently Design 360 in China had invited me to prepare an online design course aiming to share my point of view and method on commercial design. It is a brand new opportunity for me to share my own design thinking and experiences collected all these years. I am really grateful for this.

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Hong Ka Lok, Loksophy

Q: How are you holding up? How did the pandemic affect your work or studio operations?
The pandemic has had a lasting impact on the entire city economy, with many industries now cutting back on spending. In other words, there is less demand for design services, and there is a greater problem of pricing as a competitive force. For my studio, every project is the same level of investment as ever, but with less potential return, so there is a lot of struggle and pressure in running the studio.

iPhone 11 Pro Mockups by Asylab

Q: It’s the norm these days for people to work from home. How do you feel about the idea of working remotely in the long run?
I also experienced a period of “working from home (WFH)” in Macau last year. My experience tells me that remote work is not an effective method for designers. Even in terms of guidance or teaching, it is difficult for me to demonstrate or judge the level of understanding of the message conveyed through visual demonstration. But telecommuting is a good reason to save a lot of unnecessary commutes and meetings.

iPhone 11 Pro Mockups by Asylab

Q: What are you most grateful for these days?
Be grateful to yourself, have faith, and keep going. I’m sure every founder can feel the weight of that.

iPhone 11 Pro Mockups by Asylab



Bob Lei, Todot Design

Q: Were you afraid of projects getting cancelled or postponed because of COVID?
Yes, we are apprehensive of the situation, as many projects have been delayed or even cancelled because of this COVID.


Q: Things are never quite the same ever since COVID started. What have you realised is the most important to you?
Colleagues, friends, and also family who can face difficulties with you are the most important.


Q: What are you most grateful for these days?
I want to thank my family and colleagues for facing the issues caused by the pandemic together. We have not separated and are still on the battlefield together.

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Au Chon Hin, Untitled Lab


Q: Were you afraid of projects getting cancelled or postponed because of COVID?
It is definitely worrisome given the pandemic situation, but it is also quite out of our control. In this case, I think being afraid does not make things better, rather I would do my best and get ready to adapt.

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Q: What do you do differently now?
We are turning more into the trend of digitalization and online communication.

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Q: What in this present moment do you find so difficult to adjust to and how are you overcoming it?
Online communications is one of the difficult aspects to adjust to, but our company is trying to consider thoroughly ideas online so as to avoid any confusion.