Interview with Ching, Chang Wan Chong from Macau SAR

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Ching, Chang Wan Chong

Ching, Chang Wan Chong is the Design Director at Trust Design. For eight years, the firm has led architectural innovation in Macao, focusing on public spaces and residential housing. With a robust background in architecture, Ching has a deep understanding and appreciation for the complexities of design and space.

1Please give us a brief bio of yourself and your design background.

I'm Ching, Chang Wan Chong, the Design Director at Trust Design. We've been at the forefront of architectural innovation in Macao for eight years, specializing in public spaces and residential housing. With a solid background in architecture, I have a profound appreciation for the intricacies of design and space.

This expertise allows us to navigate the competitive landscape of Macao's design industry successfully, creating functional, engaging, and visually stunning environments.

2What made you become/why did you choose to become a designer/artist?
I am passionate about sharing the value of interior design with the people of Macao because I believe design has the power to transform the world and reshape our daily lifestyles. Interior design, in particular, plays a pivotal role in influencing how we live and interact with our spaces.
3Tell us more about your business/company, job profile, and what you do.

We're a comprehensive design firm, offering end-to-end services from design to construction, management, logistics, and furnishings. Our transparent approach builds trust quickly with clients, allowing us to communicate and shape their homes efficiently.

We're dedicated to emphasizing the importance of interior design and our company's ethos in every project.

4What does “design” mean to you?
In the realm of design, it serves as a pivotal element capable of reshaping human lifestyle and habits.
5What’s your favorite kind of design and why?
Personally, I favor a design style that merges functionality with modern aesthetics. I aim to convey how transformative interior design can be for our lifestyles and habits, stressing the field's importance.
6To you, what makes a “good” design?
A great design, to me, is one that transforms your lifestyle. It's about how design changes your habits, leading to positive developments in your home, business, and work life. That's what we consider truly impactful.
7Describe your design style and its main characteristics.

Our style is diverse, but our guiding principle is always people-centric. We aim for each homeowner, each audience, to achieve the greatest possible change with their limited resources.

In Macao, budget is often a key concern, but even with limited resources and space, we strive to create spaces that cater to their needs for the next decade, making their lives more comfortable and enjoyable.

8Tell us about your design process.

At the beginning, we start with consultations where we explain how interior design works and talk about any potential problems with design or renovation. We also discuss our services, including what happens after the sale and how we manage projects.

Our objective is to ensure a seamless flow from concept to reality, making certain that our computer-generated visuals perfectly align with the actual furniture in a unified design.

9Do you think your country and its cultural heritage has an impact on your design process?

Macao is a compact city, so compared to designs from other countries, we often need to be more resourceful. We find ways to be flexible and creative with limited funds, ensuring that every aspect of their personal space, even for children, contributes to their happiness and comfort.

We believe that a cozy home leads to a joyful childhood and these considerations are at the forefront of our designs.

10Congratulations! As the winner of the 2024 MUSE Design Awards, what does it mean to you and your company and team to receive this award distinction?
I feel it's truly affirming when our efforts are recognized. The 2024 MUSE Design Awards is a significant acknowledgment of our design efforts, serving as a tremendous encouragement for us.
11Can you explain a bit about the winning work you entered into the 2024 MUSE Design Awards, and why you chose to enter this project?

The project we've chosen has a Bohemian style. Firstly, its vibrant colors are eye-catching and memorable. Secondly, it's a rather intriguing project for us to take on and every moment was memorable for each and every one of us. It involved renovating an old building with numerous challenges. The space was transformed from an open-plan studio, reminiscent of Portuguese culture, to a home for a family of three.

We retained the original features like the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room and terrace while adding our design to ensure a fresh layout and clear delineation for everyone, from parents to children.

12What was the biggest challenge with this project?

The biggest challenge in this project was working within a limited budget for an older building. We had to integrate a striking new style into the existing structure, without major renovations. For instance, we preserved the kitchen, which had distinctive red checkered tiles, dividing the space into a living room and kitchen.

On the other hand, we had to address the owners' desire for privacy and a studio space, transformed the terrace into a functional workspace while dealing with the irregular shape layout and limited space. That was rather challenging but we managed to pull through!

13How has winning an Award developed your practice/career?

I want to express my gratitude to the 2024 MUSE Design Awards, for this prestigious international award. With this recognition on a global scale, I believe more people will become acquainted with our work and our unique perspective.

Being acknowledged reaffirms our commitment and allows us to earn the trust of our clients. It enables us to share our philosophy with a wider audience.

14What are your top three (3) favorite things about our industry?
What I find most rewarding is understanding the background of each client. Throughout the process of working with them, I strive to stay true to our original intent: using design to positively impact their lifestyle. This, to me, is paramount. Secondly, I'm passionate about how space can transform people. It's a constant theme throughout my work.
15What makes your country specifically, unique in the design industry?

In Macao, things are often more intricate compared to many other places. Being one of the most densely populated cities in China and beyond, every inch of our space must be utilized effectively. Additionally, in Chinese society, family ties are highly valued. It's common for people to live with their families well into their thirties.

This contrasts with many Western societies where individuals typically have more private space. Therefore, integrating traditional cultural values into interior design while preserving privacy is crucial in Macao as it reflects our unique cultural identity.

16Where do you see the evolution of design industry going over the next 5-10 years?

I envision our company Trust Design can reshape the design landscape in Macao. Showcasing interior design is about communicating its value, understanding where the design's focus lies, and why someone might need help in reimagining their space.

We take into account their lifestyle, future plans, interests, daily routines, even their pets, and personal philosophies. These are the aspects designers must consider and prioritize. Therefore, I believe that the design industry will take all these into consideration and create spaces that has all the above.

17If you were a student entering this industry or an aspiring MUSE Design Awards submitter, what advice would you give them?

The most crucial thing is to maintain passion because interior design is an area where your enthusiasm can easily wane due to the lack of recognition in Macao.

Only passion can sustain you through these challenges. Through this period of change, I hope you will garner respect and appreciation for this field.

18What resources would you recommend to someone who wants to improve their skills in the design industry?
I recommend that they subscribe to @trust_designmacau853 on YouTube, I believe in continuous learning, keeping a curious mind. Whether it's related to interior design or not, I think it's essential to keep learning because we never know the next person we'll meet!
19Tell us something you have never told anyone else.

Being a director is actually quite exhausting because you can't just talk casually with people. It's draining at times. The field of interior design is not as easy to navigate as many think.

In Macao, it's a challenging industry with little recognition. We need a significant breakthrough or recognition on an international level to reach a more lucrative income or the standards seen abroad.

20Who has inspired you in your life and why?
This company, called Big.DK, was my mentor. They were the first to show me how through experiences, you can truly transform a user's space and unleash endless possibilities for imagination.
21What is your key to success? Any parting words of wisdom?
I strongly believe that you should enjoy what you do. I simply love going to work, I never feel like it's a chore.

Winning Entry

Trust59_Bohemia | 2024

Trust59_Bohemia | Trust Design

Trust76_Refuge 皈依 | 2024

Trust76_Refuge ?? | Trust Design

Ching, Chang Wan Chong

Ching, Chang Wan Chong is the Design Director at Trust Design. For eight years, the firm has led architectural innovation in Macao, focusing on public spaces and residential housing. With a robust background in architecture, Ching has a deep understanding and appreciation for the complexities of design and space.

Read more about this interview with Yameng Wang from the United States, the Silver Winner of the 2024 MUSE Design Awards.