Raphael Kanyire Seidu
Raphael Kanyire Seidu is a Ph.D. candidate in Fashion and Textile Design in the School of Fashion and Textiles at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong. His PhD project which aims at developing smart interactive retro-reflective clothing for pedestrians’ safety at night-time. He has several publications in leading journals in textile, design, technology and material science, and has filed for a patent from his PhD project. His recent paper was adjudged the “Second-Best Paper” presented at the 12th Sustainable Education and Development Research Conference in Somanya, Ghana. His research interest focuses on retro-reflective materials, smart textiles, cloth culture, weaving and print technologies. Raphael is also a textile designer who has engaged in several hand and industrial printed works for clients in Ghana. In 2017, he was the designer for a new start-up (Afroaba collections) by Maritt Araba Biney in Copenhagen NV, DENMARK. This contract saw the creation of African textile designs and prints for the wider diaspora. Some of the related textile designs can be found via the link (https://www.facebook.com/afroabacollections/).
Below are selected publications, a full list of my publications can be accessed via https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Raphael-Seidu.
Seidu, R.K., Eghan, B., Ofori, E.A., Fobiri, G.K., Afriyie, A.O., Acquaye, R., Sustainable traditional natural dyeing practice in Daboya and Ntonso communities of Ghana, Research Journal of Textile and Apparel
Seidu, R.K., Eghan, B., Acquaye, R. A Review of circular fashion and bio-based materials for eco-friendly fashion, Circular Economy and Sustainability, https://doi.org/10.1007/s43615-023-00303-z
Seidu, R. K, Sun, L. and Jiang, S.X. A Systematic Review on Retro-reflective Clothing for Night-time Visibility and Safety, The Journal of the Textile Institute, https://doi.org/10.1080/00405000.2023.2212194
Seidu, R. K, and Jiang, S.X. (2023) Functional performance of thin Ag, SS, and Ti films on retro-reflective fabrics, The Journal of the Textile Institute, https://doi.org/10.1080/00405000.2023.2201981
Seidu, R.K., Jiang, S.X, Tawiah, B., Acquaye, R., and Howard, E.K. (2023). Review of effects of COVID-19 pandemic on the textile industry: challenges, material innovation and performance, Research Journal of Textile and Apparel. https://doi.org/10.1108/RJTA-08-2022-0098
Seidu, R.K., Choi, S.Y. and Jiang, S. (2023) Development and performance of jacquard woven retro-reflective textiles with African design patterns. Fashion and Textiles. 10, 2. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40691-022-00322-8
Seidu, R. and Jiang, S.X. (2023). Visibility aids for pedestrian safety at night: Review and recommendations for future studies. International Conference – Smart Textiles and Emerging Technologies: New Zealand, pp. 65-72. https://doi.org/10.61135/stet2023
This design concept highlights the rich cultural heritage of African textile prints in Ghana. These designs formed part of the design contract with collections which employed African traditional images or symbols to create vibrant textile prints. The choice of the attractive colours relates to the modern trends where customers are drawn to very bright colour schemes.
African textile prints have been a great heritage and pride for the designers and users of these prints by the people. In this design concept, the textile designs are inspired from Adinkra symbols (largely associated with the people of the Asantes in Ghana), lines and the environment (the natural grass). These textile designs carefully arranged using the Adobe Photoshop, reminds us of the rich cultural values of indigenous symbols in Ghana and elements in the environment provide a great source of inspiration for design works.
Hand block printing is an indigenous craft practiced in Ghana by the Asantes in Ntonso to in-print traditional symbols on textile surfaces using dyes extracted from nature. Drawing from the experiences and inspiration of their practice, these works were produced using materials such as plywood, Styrofoam and metallic net as the print blocks to transfer print paste onto the textile surface in different colours. These designs highlight the unique hand block printing process in Africa most especially in Ghana, to produce custom-made print designs for clients.
Batik, another unique textile craft is produced by craftsmen in Ghana. This design utilised floral elements as inspiration to create a batik fabric with three colours. The creative process employed foam as drawing tool to pick-up the molten wax to create the patterns before dyeing. This practice further reminds me the designer, of the unique skill needed to execute batik with wax.
Work was inspired from the tree branches. Here using a technique, I called “shift printing”, one screen was used to print different colour to depict the structures. This was a unique interpretation of the complex nature of life where we undergo different stages of life. But in all things, these challenges or success helps to sharpen and strengthen us, providing a great story for sharing to the next generation.