Sunday, April 22, 2012

Self Review

There are many ways to self review.  Here are a just few ...
  • Turn the design upside down to minimize the content read and focus on and adjust spacing issues and 1,2,3 reads (hierarchy). 
  • Golden ratio (1:1.6), are you using it to your advantage?
  • Think ahead.  For instance, does the color/design mean something to the client or will it need to be changes every few years to follow trends? 
  • Did your prototype help make decisions?  You may want to share them with the client ... seeing is believing ... and for some clients, touching is believing.  (Though do this with caution.  Be willing to use whatever you show.)
  • What did you learn from this project that you can save for future use?

Sunday, March 4, 2012


Here is a link to an informative site about critiquing designs:

Here these tips are applied to an Industrial Design example:
1. What’s Working? 
Interesting idea; this seems like a new concept for cutting pizza.  Why did you decide this method of cutting was useful?  What are the mechanics behind the design? 

My first read (the first thing that I see) when the cutter is open is the different design with the two handles.  My second read is the ceramic wheel.  My third read is the overall form and outside detailing.  What is the overall design feel (the read) you were try to achieve?

2. What’s Not Working?
The detailing on the outside of the body does not seem to have a purpose and does not seem to make the
cutter more eye catching.  Is there a reason for the detail?  Is there another detail you were considering?

Is there a safety on the blade when it is open?  Can someone harm themselves on this cutter?

Can the teeth be a different color?  It seems like they are in between hiding and being very visible (high contrast). There may be too many colors involved; it makes the cutter look complex and harder to use.

3. How could it be better?
Have you thought about material/texture changes and how that may help when the item is wet.

You may want to consider extending part of the inside to create a safety when it is open and a cap for storage.  If the blade was more traditional looking, perhaps people would handle it with more care.

Is this number of teeth and their thickness necessary?  How do they aid/deter ergonomics when open?  Can their shape be more incorporate into the entire form and/or speak more to their purpose?

Something extra:
> It is important to lead with questions and a good understanding of the desired outcome - for the project and the critique.
> You should also have a helpful attitude.  Although it is not your job to recreate their ideas, as the one giving the critique, it is your job to assist.
> Build a team.  Ask them to critique your work too. 

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Shading - Side or Point

When shading with pencil, specifically Prismacolor pencil, there are two basic ways to do it: Side shading and Tip, or Point, shading.

Side shading is accomplished by using the side of the lead.  It is smoother and can cover more area.  It should be used most often.

Tip shading is accomplished by using the tip, or point, of the pencil.  It is good for small spaces only.  When taken into bigger spaces, it adds up to a non-smooth texture that skips (lighter or white space in between lines).

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

One way to sketch a cube

The cube is the basis of measurement for every perspective drawing (one unit long and one unit high).  It can be proportioned back and up to make a more complex rectilinear object (like two units long and three units high).  Almost any object can be modeled, using a cube (or multiple cubes) as a template.  So, sketching a cube is something that we, as designers, should practice ... if you can sketch cube and get its perspective right, you can sketch almost anything.

Step 1: THE BASE
Sketch a ground line parallel to the bottom of the paper.  Sketch in a leading edge perpendicular to that ground line, then draw the bottom of the cube.  One line should accelerate back to its vanishing point quicker than the other (the resulting angles are different: x<y).
Pick a height for your cube.  Mark it on the leading edge line.  Translate the exact length of that line to the bottom edge, come toward the leading edge line to account for the foreshortening that occurs and then sketch a vertical line as the back edge.
Translate the exact length of the leading edge and the midpoint of the leading edge to the bottom edge and mark.  The back edge should be in between these marks (more toward the midpoint).  Sketch a vertical line as the back edge.
Step 4: TOP
Ghosting over the cube edges that are already there (1+2), turn the page in a rhythm to continue the top back edge (3).

You should notice that you turn the page less for the smaller angled side (this side).
Step 5: TOP CONT.
Ghosting over the cube edges that are already there (1+2), turn the page in a rhythm to continue the other top back edge (3).

You should notice that you turn the page more for the bigger angled side (this side).
Step 6: FIX
Adjust the sides of the cube to make it look more like a cube.  This takes practice.  Sometimes you can spot things better if you hold it upside down.  You can also double check your work by doing a reverse draft and making sure your plan is a square.

Last step: DARKEN
Go back and darken the edges that you would like the viewer to see.