DeCanva, a MindHype Studios project

Rethink the role of a smartphone case.

Of course, it provides protection to smartphones against dropping and scratching, but if that's the only reason, we will all choose that super thick, durable, and ugly rubbery case.


Apparently, today's people consider a "smartphone case" as part of their decorations, just like a handbag or a pair of sneakers, representing their taste or interest. And as designers, instead of buying those fancy smartphone cases, why don't we use such "case" as a canvas, and express our own aesthetic?

With this idea in mind (and some spare time in hand), I started this project "DeCanva."

i7 Logo.png
i7 Slogan.png

MindHype Original Collection, Fall 2017.

An expression of MindHype Studio's design principle: a system should be designed with comprehensive preliminary researches, and be refined with repetitive usability tests. It should be able to solve problems in an efficient and effective way, but does not bring burdens to users by adding complicated but unnecessary features.

i7 Ins_Outs.png

The Outside/Inside, Fall 2017.

I asked them, "what made you buy the new phone?" And they gave me all kinds of reasons, which could be concluded into one: this is such a nice phone.

It is our customers' right to enjoy good products, but as designers and engineers, we should not only know what is good on the outside, but also know what makes a product good from the inside. Only in this way, we are able to continually design and build something that is truly great.

i7 CNY5.png
i7 CNY4.png
i7 CNY2.png
i7 CNY1.png

Chinese New Year Collection, Winter 2018.

The lucky star shines upon you.

All good fortunes arrive at your door.

All the wishes come true.

Blooming flowers bring fortune.

i7 CNY3.png

Wish you a wonderful marriage.

Design Highlights:

Background color: "Chinese Red" #e60000, a symbol of liveliness and prosperity. This color is widely used in wedding dresses, amulets, and palaces built in ancient China.

Element color: "Gold" #ddb77d, a symbol of fortune. This color is widely used in wedding dresses, ancient furniture, and personal decorations. 

Patterns: A circular and abstract representation of Chinese characters "fortune," "happiness," "longevity," and "auspiciousness." In Chinese culture, "circle" represents union, and Chinese New Year is the time for families to gather around and celebrate for a new start.​

i7 X-ing.png
i7 Dinning.png

Impression of Japan Collection, Winter 2018.

"late night dinning"

"crossing road"

i7 Wish.png
i7 Blooming.png

"making a wish"

"blooming cherry blossom"

i7 Gate.png


Photos credit to Chris Yang and Redd Angelo.

​Image processing: Adobe Lightroom + Illustrator

Asian countries do share something in common, but Japan holds its uniqueness in culture, architecture, and lifestyle. And through these canvases, I want to express my impression of Japan as "a contradiction."


The contradiction lies between people who were walking in an unusually fast pace at the Shibuya crossing, and people who grouped up after work and visited three bars in a row at late night.


The contradiction lies between people who dressed up in the same kind of boring suits, had the same kind of stressful look on their faces, and people who dressed up in all kinds of cosplay clothes and talked about the animation they loved in Akihabara just several blocks away.


The contradiction also lies between the modern neighborhood with advanced technologies deployed all over the place, and the well-protected shrines built hundreds of years ago, with males and females dressing up in traditional costumes making all kinds of wishes.


I sensed contradictions throughout the trip, until I realized that, it is rather a perfect balance among the society, among Japanese people’s lifestyles. 

DeCanva - The new canvas for modern designers.

Design Collaboration: Mingxiao Hu, MindHype Studios

Fall 2017 // Winter 2018 // Everything that is essential, nothing that is not.