BIG Small

by asking the unasked, we solve the unanswered.

by asking the unasked, we solve the unanswered.

BIGsmall beginnings

The origins of the BIGsmall brand lay within Ulster University. As colleagues, founders Prof. Justin Magee & Stephen McGilloway, created the title in 2006 to help differentiate their services to industry whilst lecturing together in product design.

In 2012, Stephen left the Higher Education sector to incorporate BIGsmall as a standalone studio, and with the kind permission of his colleague, continued the use of the identity. They maintain their working relationship to the present day.

About us

To move from the notional to the physical, we start by asking better questions. The sort of questions most people never think to ask.

Like, ‘How do blind people vote with complete and rightful confidentiality?’ Those questions start the ball rolling and the brain ticking.

The answers to those questions quickly become new business opportunities and, in time, those projects help to make the lives of end-users that bit easier and more enjoyable.

We enjoy a creative role in shaping those futures.

How we do

Project Framing - we help clients understand the scope of their business opportunity & how design can play a pivotal role

Industrial Design - using design tools & processes, we develop ideas from conversations, create concepts & turn digital capture into physical artefacts

Visualisation - when you need to tell a story, explain the features & benefits of a product, pitch for funding or protect your IP, we generate those visuals

Prototyping - we use a broad spectrum of technologies to make mock-ups for assessing single features or more extensive field testing

Manufacturing - we have a range of production & contract manufacturing partners in the UK, Ireland, Europe & Asia to bring products to market

BIG picture, small details

We’re an award-winning firm who enjoy working in three distinct areas.

Consumer Products, Life & Health Sciences and ‘Form as Function’ projects.

We work with clients who recognise that good design brings competitive advantage. We look for a good fit before we commence work on any project.

We’re happy to talk about projects in other areas, but only engage when a mutual opportunity for significant learning exists.

We have worked with high-growth pre-enterprise start-ups, established manufacturers with in-house engineering teams, and multi-nationals who use our design expertise to drive their innovation.

As a policy, we do not free pitch for client work. Please don’t ask as refusal often offends.

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