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Meet Olaf Bracht, Industrial Designer for Outwell

Outwell family tent designer

As an industrial designer Olaf believes that tents may be as old as mankind but there is still potential for exciting innovation

What is your background and what is your function?
I studied Industrial Design at the university of Essen and worked in several design studios before I concentrated on outdoor design because of private interest and the big amount of special knowledge I had gained during numerous outdoor adventures like kayaking among the Greece islands, hiking and climbing in the Alps and long canoe trips in northern Scandinavia.
I am part of the research and development team and mainly focus on the development of the tents.

What tendencies do you see within your area going forward?
Tents are about as old as mankind, but they still offer a lot of potential for innovations and inventions. Small ones which simply make living in the  great outdoors easier and more comfortable, but also new developments which set new trends and can change the whole scenery of products. 

What makes Scandinavian design good?
It is straight and without any unnecessary decorative attributes. The design is concentrated on the purpose the product has to fulfill, it is easy to understand, features excellent ergonomic qualities and well balanced shapes. Because of the resulting asthetical clearness the designs often are regarded as timeless and there are many high regarded Scandinavian made products available which were designed 50 years ago.

What makes the Outdoor Industry interesting?
In most parts of the commercial life people are exchangeable: A CEO of a chemical company might change to tourism business, another one from sweets to car parts. This is definitely different in the outdoor industry – it is not only figures which count. All of the mayor business people in this branch love the outdoors and are experts to judge and to handle their products. The atmosphere in this business is very relaxed, but of course also focused on outstanding products and innovations as well.