CommeConception: Merging Design with Functionality in Footwear

In the realm of footwear design, where the boundaries between fashion and functionality blur, Pek Shun Ping, known by his IG handle CommeConception (ALIVEFORM being his brand), stands as a testament to innovation and creativity.

Spotlights & Case Studies

In the realm of footwear design, where the boundaries between fashion and functionality blur, Pek Shun Ping, known by his IG handle CommeConception (ALIVEFORM being his brand), stands as a testament to innovation and creativity. Fernando from FF dives into Ping's world, exploring his journey from a product design graduate in Singapore to a pioneering footwear designer based in Tokyo. Futures Factory, a platform dedicated to empowering independent designers and a design studio specialized into 3D-printing, shines a light on talents like Ping, emphasizing the fusion of digital artistry and practical design.

From Product Design to Footwear Innovation

Ping's educational journey laid the groundwork for his foray into footwear design. "I graduated with a product design degree...then I moved to Tokyo, working as a footwear designer," Ping shares, marking the transition from a generalist design background to a specialized focus in footwear. His participation to the Pensole Design Academy competition in 2019, a collaborative project with ASICS and Foot Locker, was a pivotal moment. Ping won the competition and he knew that he wanted to go further: launching his brand.

Monstera Stomper, 2022. Image courtesy of ALIVEFORM.
AliveForm Monstera Stomper

The Intersection of Fashion and Technology

CommeConception's work exemplifies the delicate balance between fashion sensibility and technical prowess. "I've always been interested in fashion and art...footwear is in between, it could be really technical with sportswear, or it could be really fashion-driven," Ping explains. This duality is at the heart of his design philosophy, where each creation speaks to both aesthetic appeal and functional innovation.

The Role of 3D Printing in Footwear Design

Ping's fascination with 3D printing as the future of footwear design is palpable. "3D printing is the main reason for why I'm actually in footwear," he states, recalling the inspiration drawn from Adidas' first 3D-printed footwear. Pek was introduced to 3D printing when he pursued a BFA in Industrial and Product Design at Nanyang Technological University. His journey with a desktop 3D printer underscores the democratization of design, allowing creators to experiment and innovate within their own spaces. This exploration into 3D printing has not only fueled his passion but also positioned him as a frontrunner in utilizing technology to redefine traditional footwear production.

3D printing process of ARMIS collection. Image courtesy of ALIVEFORM.

Envisioning a Decentralized Production Future

CommeConception's vision extends beyond individual design projects to a broader transformation within the footwear industry. The potential for decentralized production, powered by 3D printing, promises a future where designers can directly bring their creations to consumers, bypassing the constraints of large-scale manufacturing. "I feel that in the near future, a lot of production will also be decentralized," Ping anticipates, aligning with Futures Factory's mission to foster innovation and independence in design.

Empowering Designers Like CommeConception

Futures Factory champions designers like Ping, providing a platform where innovation, sustainability, and community converge. By showcasing CommeConception's journey and insights, Futures Factory reaffirms its commitment to pushing the boundaries of digital and physical design, inviting creators and consumers alike to partake in the future of footwear.

"We're doing this series of interviews to give back to the community by promoting the onboarded designers," Fernando concludes, highlighting the symbiotic relationship between Futures Factory and the designers it supports. This partnership not only amplifies individual talents but also drives the collective evolution of footwear design.

In early 2022, Futures Factory collaborated with CommeConception on a digital sneaker inspired by Aliens, the 1986's horror movie.

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