Meet the BZ Team: Ben Swiatek — Designer Jedi

Meet Ben Swiatek — the newest member of the BZ family. Ben — or Ben 2.0 as he is often lovingly referred to — joined the team this last April as an industrial design intern from Rochester Institute of Technology. He graduated in May 2015 (congrats, Ben!) with a bachelors degree in industrial design and also a minor in packaging science.


Hi Ben. So where did you come from? How did you find your way to BZ?
I’m originally from Buffalo, NY. I recently graduated RIT with my BFA in industrial design, and I was first introduced to the team by fellow BZ industrial designer Koby Trout. I then interviewed with Ben Zombek and Kelly Vars at the RIT creative fair, which eventually led to me working here.


What first sparked your interest in industrial/product design?
I’ve always enjoyed building things and being creative — no matter how weird or crazy it may be. Originally, I came to RIT for video game design, because I wanted to create new worlds and stories for users to interact with and experience. When I realized I hated coding, I found my way to industrial design and the rest is creative history.


To you, what is good design?
Good design, to me, is shown through user interaction. It is usually something that works intuitively, without much instruction. Products are just objects, and strangers need to be able to pick them up and know exactly what to do with it, without ever having to ask anyone or read an instruction manual.


What have you learned from your time at BZ (so far)?
I’ve learned so much since starting here at BZ. Lots of new skills, some I thought I’d never use in my career— especially when it comes to soft goods. There have been a couple projects now where I have had to sew. Who knew my 7th grade home economics class would come in handy?


Besides making awesome design dreams come true at BZ Design, what other hobbies do you have?
I love working out and staying healthy, riding my bike/cycling. I’m often a nerd with video games and comic books. And I am a HUGE Star Wars fan.


Where’s the best spot to eat in Rochester? And don’t say garbage plates.
Favorite place to eat in Rochester would have to be either The Distillery down on Mt. Hope, or the Gatehouse over in the Village Gate Square.


Thanks, Ben. And welcome aboard!