Initial Brief Analysis – Design Factory

Before we broke up for Christmas, we were given our brief for our next project. The Design Factory brief asks us to explore “How might we reimagine the making of things to reimagine the things themselves?”. The materials economy has proven that this system is not sustainable, and as a designer, we should try not to design less, but to design better. This might include the materials used, and to solve a problem within the materials economy such as toxic chemicals being used that might have impact on our own health, and certainly the environment we live in.

The first part of the brief asks us to dissect the materials processes involved in the production process, thinking sustainably. To do this, we should ask ourselves the following questions about an existing product and how we could change each to make the process sustainable:

  •  How do you think the object was made?
  •  What different kinds of materials and processes were involved?
  •  Where might its constituent raw materials come from?
  • What manufacturing decisions would the designer have had to consider?
  • What will happen to it once the user no longer has use for it?
  • Might there be other ways to make the object?
  • Could you substitute materials or manufacturing processes, or make it completely differently?
  • How far could you change these without changing the thing itself?
  • How might your changes affect the way people use this object?

We should present our findings in the form of PDF’s using:

  • Visual data – drawings, diagrams and photographs
  •  Written data – this should include critical and analytical reflection.

The second part of the brief asks us to identify a potential user for the invention, giving  the product context and desirability within that field. We should ask ourselves “is it for a type of object that already exists (e.g. based on your chosen Design of The Year exhibit) or a new kind of thing?”

In my research I should consider the following:

  • Will the way things are made affect how they is used? How?
  • What new kinds of services, systems, loaning or owning, or novel regulations might exist/ develop because of your design?

The second PDF should include:

board of research – defining the user and the circumstances for intention, not the intervention/ system itself.

The third stage of the process asks to develop ideas. This might include mocking up prototypes and playing with the design to determine the best possible outcome. This might also stimulate fresh new ideas that will benefit my final product.

This should be presented in the third and fourth PDF with the following guidelines:

one board for development, and a second for the design solution, plus a written statement of 500 words. (If appropriate, your design solution board could be substituted for a ❤ minute video).


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