Tag Archives: proportions

on how it’s crunch weeeeeeek

I have been down. I have been out. But I’m back nowwwww!
Ok, in all seriousness, I’ve been lame, I’ve been tired, I’ve been sick and unmotivated and procrastinating because I’m behind – which only puts me further and further behind.
However, this week is crunch week and there’s so much to do, it makes me feel like I could pick up a mountain or something because it is business timeeeeeee. And I’ve got to get down to it.
I guess the only singular comforting thing about being slightly behind is knowing that getting the concept right, even if the deliverables aren’t all that, is the most important part of a project. Especially because there’s always opportunity to re-do projects for portfolio, but it’s worth the presentation to have your project concept well developed and concise.

I’m making progress on everything involved in this project at the moment. I’m going to lathe today after lunch to get the curves of my form figured out, because I want to transpose the same form from the pasta extruder to the peeler and the ice cream maker. I’m researching portions and serving sizes to see if those can drive my product proportions better, as well as the hand-span of children in my age range so that they can actually hold and use the products I’m making. I’m hoping to 3D print the pasta extruder because I think it’s important to see the screw-threaded interaction points, and having a solid lump of sine foam wouldn’t quite cut it (for me personally) – which means that I need to get into SolidWorks and get everything done ASAP. I’m almost done making the handle that will be used in all three products; it’s a nice blend of geometric shapes (squares, triangles, circles) that are really aesthetically interesting.

I’m currently having problems determining how much serving sizes/portions should drive my product proportions. I feel like using serving sizes literally would drive the ‘health’ point home, but I’m concerned that sticking so closely to them might cause some gross products…? Or some awkward proportions, since an average family size is 4, but I like multiples of 3 and children’s hands are so small. Hmm.
Materials are pretty much already determined, I’m just figuring out details from already-existing products [i.e. how much space allowance around a pint-sized canister of ice cream is needed for salt and coolant substances in a hand-cranked ice cream maker?]. But I’m excited, or running off of adrenaline, either/or and I’m getting on to stuff that I wouldn’t be so ashamed to claim.

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on seeing the design process in action

I’m currently working on rendering different materials and colors for kicks while I mull over the comments I’ve gotten thus far.
Some important points I should touch on:

  1. weight and/or “bulky-ness” (could you stack 6 plates together to take from the cupboard to the table? can a little kid hold this at all?)
  2. materials -> directly relate to the weight of the pieces, and impact the ‘honesty’
  3. the cup has no handle; what is the consumer meant to do when they want to drink something hot? Is the cup insulated?? etc.
  4. color -> changed by the material choice, can communicate the words better or worse
  5. that whole “HONESTY” issue -> can be easily solved through material choice, and can be changed by more “honest” curves
  6. proportions -> some people are having SO many problems with the size of things

So, let’s talk it out.

  1. Yes. You’re all right. It looks freaking massive and heavy. But it’s all shelled out, and you can see that a little more clearly if you peek at the drawings and the sliced shells on the individual boards. So the plate and saucer have huge table-prints [footprints? the area they take up on a table?], but they aren’t solid.
  2. I wasn’t making a very informed design decision when I rendered my set for Wednesday’s pin-up; I was mostly excited to show the overall form, and now I can think more about what to do with the materials. I’m currently rendering some versions in plastic and glass; both of these options change the ‘honesty’ and the weight. Glass would let the user know what’s going on because you can see through it right away, without having to pick the pieces up – but it would probably be a little heavy still. Plastic would be cheap and light and also see-through, but hopefully not cheap looking. Plastic might help in the “floating” sense (the saucer ‘floats’).
  3. Originally, I left a handle off of my cup because I didn’t want to do a “traditional” tea-cup set [because, c’mon, this doesn’t have to be your Granny’s tea set – the assignment is simply ‘cup, saucer, and plate’ and those are all open to interpretation ((Sarah is doing an espresso cup and dessert plate! And it’s cool!))], but Collin brought up a good point – is that cup insulated? What if I want hot chocolate in it instead of sake? Why would a sake cup have a saucer? And I realized that if you put a hot beverage into that cup, would you get a steam burn trying to yank it out of the saucer? Because a cup and saucer set that burns you would be really freaking uncomfortable. Also known as “failure.”
  4. Lighter colors say “fresh” to me, too. I want this to be fresh in a light, crisp, large-windowed-apartment kind-of-way but I also think that if the form is well crafted, that any color applied to it should just yell “YO! I’M FRESH!”
  5. So my saucer isn’t very honest – he’s full of lies and secrets [i.e. he’s holding my cup and pretending like the cup isn’t as big as it is]. Whoops.!I think changing the materials will help this, though, and I can always contemplate redrawing some of my curves to achieve more “honest” relation from one piece to the next.
  6. My proportions are all related, they’re just unconventional. Either it’s fantastic that my overly large saucer is attracting so much attention because I did my job by making it quirky, or it’s just so out of whack that consumers would look at that on a shelf and be like “WHAT?”, and then walk by it on their way to Ikea and grab a ‘normal’ set. My words aren’t “comfortable, boring, normal” – they’re fresh and quirky! I define both fresh AND quirky as being different, unconventional, off-the-wall, new, modern, etc. (Did you bother reading my defintion page? It is there for a reason.) I wanted something simple and crisp, but interesting and different at the same time. I think it’s good to hear people have such concrete opinions about it one way or another, though. I like having things that are conversation pieces (anyone remember my curvilinear composition from sophomore year?).

Things I’m going to work on now:

  • materials via SolidWorks
  • play around with sizes a smidgen; re-think curves a little
  • re-draw the base of the plate; right now it would be pretty hard to get it off the table since there’s no place to put your fingers to lift it!
  • colors and graphics

Thanks y’all!
(ps. Isn’t it cool to take part in the design process? Your feedback helps me know what to tweak.)

new-set-bigger

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