For the final chair design we gained inspiration from the mechanism of pulling out and pushing in a beam (used in our previous design). Our final design is still a stool in the vulnerable state and a proper chair, with arm- and backrests, in the strong state. For the vulnerable state we used the same method we have been using throughout the whole elective: having thin, almost translucent colours at the bottom of the design, whilst the more powerful darker colours are on leaning on the vulnerable to make it even more so. The uncomfortable height of the stool make the user feel vulnerable whilst sitting on it, since they can not reach the ground.
The parts visible in both states we kept as neutral in material as possible by picking wood and using simple black leather. In the strong state steel bars become visible and an arm- and backrest would appear, so next to the strong look it also felt strong whilst sitting on it.
The most important lesson for me was how to convey an intended product experience, of course I did try that before, yet never so conscious. Because during this course I learned the tools to achieve such communication; mood board, sketches, material use and user testing.
The user testing during our process gave me another insight, since I used to only ask their opinion at the end of a design process to validate my assumptions, inquiring them earlier in the process might have given me new ideas before that, ending up with a much more elaborate design. Looking back now, I think that during this elective we should have asked the users more questions to explore options rather than validating assumptions.
Making mood boards gave me a lot of inspiration for the sketches, I think that without this I wouldn’t be able to sketch as much. Though making small tangible models is still the best way to explore ideas for me, I figured out that if you push yourself to draw over the threshold of inspiration you get more far-fetched and original ideas, which is worth sketching for. Last but not least, I really enjoyed making and designing the chairs.
"The mood board made from solely materials was an excellent modification of the tools to meet the design challenge. Excellent final result." David McCallum
Lecturer: David McCallum
Duration: ~50 hours, 8 weeks
Team: Daan Heijsters