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Student Showcase Archive

Cal Craven

MA work

MA work

68m Environmentally Conscience Luxury Exploration Yacht

Owners Brief

The client is one of many emerging yacht owners who are beginning to like their luxuries with a bit of social conscience. He not only wants the yacht to be at the forefront of design, comfort and luxury but also in environmental sustainability. 'Design me a self-sufficient explorer yacht', he said, 'I don’t want to be posing in marina’s all day eating caviar, I want to be able to go out exploring on a covert Arctic expedition.' The client also wants to add a new dimension to his yacht: 'It is old news having the largest or most luxurious yacht in the marina. I want to be known for giving something back to the planet.'

Exterior Design

This 68m new breed of yacht will be built and delivered by Oceanco, who are renowned for producing yachts for visionary owners. Cal Craven from Vehicle Design at the RCA will design the exterior. The experienced yacht owner was bored of the conventional sleek yacht look; he wanted something quite minimal but distinctive with aspects of interesting detail. He mentioned the word ‘stealthy ’ and ‘aggressive’ a few times. We brainstormed the idea of a new design aesthetic called treasure-ism: when an object is designed to functionally protect you but also use the visual design language of safety. A good example of this is the BMW I8: a very safe car, with visual recognition of this fact created through an exterior built up in layers. What most inspired the client was the experience and joy of finding hidden details under those layers of protection when closely examined.

The main feature of the exterior is the use of geometric polished aluminium panels, which give it a very minimal, eye catching, clean surface. This acts as the outer layer; hidden beneath is subtly detailed carbon fibre that is only exposed as the eye is drawn towards the bow. This layering effect provides the yacht with an extremely strong visual language. As the the eye is guided towards the bow of the ship by the aluminium panel, the hull is complimented by the use of a reverse bow, but unlike so many designs this does not overpower the design or become the main feature of the yacht. The proportions of the yacht are designed to look longer than higher, creating a more aggressive look which also complements the yacht#s stance. Its stance was based around capturing the essence of speed, as found in a cheetah just before it launches into a sprint. Hence the superstructure leans forward, adding to its aggressive look while functionally adding more head space at the rear for a dynamic interior.



  • MA Degree


    School of Design


    MA Vehicle Design, 2015

  • Innovate rather than refine.  

    I'm interested in all types of design, in particular vehicle and industrial design.