Prototype to Fabrication: What can exciting design accomplish?

Since the day we arrived, the class of 2017 has been feverishly learning new ideas, ways of thinking, softwares and hardwares. While we are doing this, many of us are learning to live in a new city.  A question we have been faced with since any of us had even heard of ITP is regarding what it is or how to even describe it. However, I think our mass production class has given me the term to describe it. The adjective I will be giving out now to describe ITP is “New”. Everything is new to me. Each day I am learning something new or thinking in a new way. Truly, nothing is old, it is all cutting edge, and you can always feel the energy of our minds collectively pushing to understand these concepts. The way sin which thinking about prototyping and fabrication has pushed my brain to new levels of conceptualization – coupled with the use of Fusion 360, is unbelievable to me. I have been looking at the manufactured world so much more differently than before. I can able to analyzing and understanding the things that surround me so much more that I ever have been able to. We all know the feeling of connecting with nature – connecting with the natural elements is uplifting for the soul and mind. I would contest that we can apply the same logic to city living – connecting with the non natural elements in our world fills me with a similar peace within my mind and soul. Perhaps it the elements of understanding that can make one feel whole within their spirit and mind.

My final piece I came to make in Fusion 360 was simple, but incorporates elements of art, social need, and personal practice. From the beginning of this course, I knew I wanted to make a product that would serve a cause and serve as art. My original idea in full was as follows:

Leaver: An injected molded plastic box with a leaver attached. Used to make change for the contributor and collect a portion of a one dollar bill which is placed inside.

It’s funny how a good name can make your mind go down the rabbit hole. It was really the name that made my mind run wild. I thought to myself that a charity box that acts like a slot machine (you actually pull down a lever) with a name like “Leaver” was too genius not to model my project on.

And so I went trying to manage learning new and complicated software with a complicated design idea.

However, as I attempted to make this in Fusion 360, I can’t say it felt like the right thing to be doing with the amount of time we had to prepare this. It became clear to me that perhaps I should be thinking with the KISS principle in mind – something that that been repeated in our class many times (and many Autodesk online tutorials!). So with this new approach, I boiled my idea down – I took away the lever aspect and took away the dollar bill aspect. In the end I realized I was left with something so simple, so iconic, and in dire need of an update –  the piggy bank. Taking inspiration from Jeff Koons Balloon Dog sculptures, one of which is displayed on 5th avenue only a few blocks from Tisch, I aimed to make a unique stainless steel piggy bank. I will make it clear that the intention of this piggy bank, which I have called The Pig, is to collect money for charity – and hopefully this fashionable and progressive design re-do of a classic ceramic piggy bank will inspire people to start collecting their loose change for charity. I do not expect The PIG to change the world, but hopefully unique designs can excite and inspire people to do good.

I feel very fortunate to be working with CAD for the first time. Being able to construct objects, shapes, and forms is incredibly inspiring. I found myself orbiting around my sculpture and being enamored with its design elements for long periods of time -designing in 3D software is an incredibly unique and inspiring practice.

To be continued…

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