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Q+Q’s 2015 Collection, Shot by Amanda Ringstad

When we first invited one of our favorite prop stylists, Seattle’s Amanda Ringstad, to create a shoot around Q+Q‘s line of waterproof, solar-powered watches last year, she attempted to abstract the simple, color-blocked designs into ambiguous shapes and arrangements. For its 2015 Spice collection, however, the Japanese brand — who partnered with us for a second time at this year’s Sight Unseen OFFSITE — went wild with pattern, so we thought it would be especially compelling to return to Ringstad once again and see how that might change her aesthetic approach. The result is a series of playful, summery images shot inside a big bucket of water that imagine the watches as eye-catchingly outfitted, anthropomorphized bathers.

Explains Ringstad of her concept: “I knew I didn’t want the background to compete too much with the patterns on the watches. But I also wanted to incorporate texture and depth. Since the watches are water-resistant and have funny bathing-suit patterns, obviously a hyperbolic water/pool scene with little watch swimmers made sense. I thought of David Hockney’s paintings and photo collages of pools right away — the color, perspective, and reductive quality of his work really inspired me. I also wanted the watches to have subtle humanistic qualities. It would have been great to do a synchronized swimming theme, but I didn’t have enough watches, so I filled a plastic basin with water, got a fan, and experimented with layering.”

For Ringstad, that ability to freely experiment, without any creative constraints imposed by us, was what drew her to accept our proposal for a second time. While she’s been working on amazing projects lately for clients like Drugsoverdinner.org, Ladies & Gentlemen Studio, Fast Company, Blk Pine Workshop, and herself — she’s relaunching her personal website in the coming weeks with the help of Seattle design agency Civilization — there’s nothing quite like an open-ended brief when it comes to creative inspiration. Check out Ringstad’s final photos below, then head to Q+Q’s online shop to get your own Spice watch for $45.
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