I'm starting a new design show called "DUI"

I started DUI because I can’t bear hearing another designer talk through their process without being inebriated. I’m only kidding, I started DUI because I thought to my self, wouldn’t it be cool to drink and talk design with one of my favorite designers Naoto Fukasawa. I would totally film that session and share it with the world. Could you imagine your favorite designer intoxicated talking design? This would be so entertaining and inspiring all at once. What started as a stupid idea has spun into fruition. I’m actually going to pursue this, Its unlikely I’ll reach Fukasawa at first, but maybe in a couple of years if I play my cards right.

DUI, Design Under the Influence, will be an interview-style show about the design process. I want to invite designers (engineers, creators) to talk about their influences...while designing under the influence. The show is for aspiring creatives looking to learn the craft and wisdom from professionals. I think it’ll be a fun source of inspiration, because I believe learning from others helps your creative development and productivity.

I’m going to try to post new episodes monthly on YOUTUBE . Depending how my liver handles the first couple episodes.

Below are some process photos of work-in-progress for the show.


Tiger Balms are NostalgiC

Tiger Balm was the cure for everything as a kid. You're sick ? Apply Tiger Balm. You're sore? Apply Tiger Balm. You have a migraine? Apply Tiger Balm. So I wanted to refresh a product I've used all my life.  Here's my first take at a new look and feel of Tiger Balm. Enjoy the process. More to come. 



It's been awhile since we've done a community design projects. One year now to be exact. Last one was the watchdogs, and it's turn out was dope. Karim Rashid himself loved it. See the project here if you missed it.

This time let's design inhalers. Here's some info on "Metered Dosed Inhalers" if you want to geek out, but don't be constrained by all that data. Go wide in your explorations, have fun and explore unique materials, crazy mechanisms and bizarre shapes. We want to keep this loose so design criteria's are simple. Use the CAD provided. Must have a counter, 200 count to be exact. Use what ever tool you want, just as long as the idea comes across. Have Fun. 

Click here to download CAD

PS. Included are quick sketches that are inspired around the insecurities of using inhalers. Hiding the pMDI cartridge under a softer durometer material, this still allows for cartridge compression, and opens up some fun opportunities in design. 


I've had my eye on the Scrambler Solo Seat for awhile now. I wanted it for the rear rack so I can motorcycle camp this summer. After months of monitoring craigslist I finally found a great deal. I wanted a used seat so I could learn to reupholster it. I don't know much about upholstery but figured I'm up for the challenge. The thought of having a custom motorcycle seat seems rad. It'll definitely set my bike apart, and make the value go up right...? (joke about the latter)

It was a difficult decision because I was torn between making the seat black pleats or burgundy pleats. I've always been a fan of the blacked out look, but I'm glad I went with the burgundy (some call it oxblood.) I'm quite happy with the new seat and grip combo. What are your thoughts?

Don't be fooled by the video. I failed twice. This was the third try. Here is my first attempt:

Anyway. enjoy the video and photos of the new look. 

PS. I got rid of the hideous stock rear fender. Replaced it with the Motobox Slimline. I think it makes the tail-end so SICK! Get yours here.

Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph Burgundy Seat
Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph Burgundy Seat close up
Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph Burgundy w/ Motobox Taillight
Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph Burgundy Seat Motobox Slimline Tail lights
Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph Biltwell Grip
Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph front view
Hobo Life Hoang M Nguyen Bonneville Triumph Slimline Motobox taillight kit

Forming the Mark: Ho°Bo°


If there is one thing I can pass along on this post, it's a theory I call the "appleswoosh" effect. Its when a companys logomark doesnt directly correlate to the things they produce. Its more about their products, core values and beliefs that make their icon, an icon. Nike used a checkmark. Apple, a fruit. My point is -- is that sometimes we spend too much time justifying our logo designs, and dont realize its only a third of the equation. This isn't very conducive to any forward momentum of our company. 


In the diagram above there are three pillars that make up a company: The Icon, Brand & Product. I’ve represented them through sketches we can relate to. The icon is the face of the company. Regardless of how attractive you are, we rely on the heart to determine your brand.  These are things such as: your attitude, personality and values. The sum of it all is what society consumes, the product

As much as I am excited to fill this blog with product. Firstly, it'll be fun to touch on the logo I designed and the inspiration around it. Yes, it's ironic I encouraged you to not spend much time on your logo, but you should still care about its origins.  Keep good design practices, but avoid spending way too much time justifying the design so you don't rabbit hole yourself and move on.

I knew I wanted this blog to be about adventures on the motorcycle. There are so many places I want to check out, in and around California. Ho°Bo° is the perfect excuse to ride and explore. When designing the logo I drew inspiration from things related to: location, geography and traveling. I chose the final logo because how extensible the longitude & latitude concept is, and I love its application. Imagine Ho° & Bo° replaced with coordinates relative to my adventures. Would you be curious about where I went? There's something compelling about tracking down mysterious coordinates to me that I encourage the stalker in you to agree. Especially if I presented them to you like this:

Below are a few more sketches to tease your appetite. Enjoy them as I enjoyed quickly sketching them.