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j-drummer

The Introspective Toolbox

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Ok so I was wondering whether or not to do this challenge. I started mulling it over and got drawn in by the fact it might be quite productive to go all introspective on my ass!

To have deeper look into how I use my tools and what flaws there are in my design process.

 

First off I’m going to look at the tools I use at each stage of the design process and start by simply asking:

 

Does it help or hinder my creativity?

Do I have any bad habits?

 

Time to get brutally honest with myself!

 

First up

Research and ideation:

 

Tools:

Ball point, sketchbook/paper, camera, post-its,

Pc, tablet.

 

Ok so the first bit of honesty, I’m a perfectionist! This sometimes draws me into the wonderful world of the UNDO button too early. I’m then stuck at my computer wondering which of the ten million tools to use. Talk about how to crush what little creativity I have!

 

Can a toolbox help prevent my perfectionist urges?? Ooo line of thought.

 

Anyone else out there a fellow sufferer?

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Next up

Develop and communicate

 

Tools:

Ballpoint, Markers (30ish), Sharpie, Tracing Paper, Pencil, but more often now i'm digitally sketching/rendering so am in the office with my trusty Wacom.

 

I find this stage of the process more mentally demanding, requiring longer periods of concentration. My perfectionist nature loves this bit as i can focus on making a great looking sketch for the client. However I think sometimes I can get to hung up on presentation when the sketch simply needs to communicate. Am I wasting time? possibly, could the toolbox help me to stay focused on communicating, not "is it a pretty sketch"? Maybe some kind of time management aid toolbox?

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Finally

Refine and Realize

 

Tools:

Card, knife, scissors, etc, but way more time CAD modeling and sending stuff to the 3D printer, laser cutter etc these days.

 

Far less likely to need to be mobile than the earlier stages. Not sure how the toolbox would fit in at this stage? need to keep thinking about it....

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Ok so I think i'm going to focus on designing a toolbox that aids getting out about. Aimed at keeping that inspiration flowing during the ideation and development stages and also me away from the computer. A toolbox for the park bench, tube, bus, car or mountain top. Yes the good old sketchbook or the modern tablet is probably going to be the most mobile thing but could you take the good stuff from the studio out? that wall of post-it notes with you? mood board?

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It would be pretty cool if the sketching surface where touch-sensitive so all your sketches get digitalized while you are drawing. Just an idea, don't know whether it fits in your concept :)

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Yeah it had crossed my mind, that or a rotating surface with a tablet on one side drawing surface on the other. Still not sure if the tablets a good idea, think i can find it a bit of a distraction. Keeping it simple with pen and paper was my focus but maybe I'm fighting the inevitable!

 

Whats brings out the creativity for you guys, digital or old skoo! ?

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I really love starting with just sketching: trying out different ideas quickly and effectively: what does it look like from different angles, how are the mechanics going to work?

 

I agree that having either a tablet or a sketchpad would be distracting. But maybe you can design it so it works easily with Inkling or something similar, so you can be sketching and then seamlessly go on working on your idea digitally. I think nowadays it wouldn't make sense to leave out the digital part of design when making a toolbox for designers.

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I really like the direction you're headed in with this design. It's much in line with my thoughts on the designers toolbox. I also agree with Pandebus that I prefer starting off with just my mind, pen, and paper in the ideation phase of any design. It's not until I have a clear vision with where I want my design to go that I actually start CADing and hammering little details. That being said, with the prevalence of tablets and the design ideas you have already, I think you should continue with incorporating tablet usage into your toolbox. I also like your initial breakdown of your tool usage at different stages of the design process. I wish I had organized my brainstorming a little more neatly like yours!

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I love starting with sketching: trying out different ideas from different angles, how are the mechanics going to work? The idea may not perfect at prime,then ,use software to shap it what you what ,and you will find it may not your orriginal idea at this process.

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Thanks for the input guys, its always good to hear how others work.

 

So I've done a little bit more work on the design. Iv been focusing on how to secure the tools into the toolbox, particularly the pens,pencils and markers etc. They need to held well enough for the box to take a beating but also very easy to pull in and out for use. I toyed with magnets, Velcro, clips, elastic loops etc but struggled to find a way to accommodate the huge verity of shapes and sizes. Then i had some inspiration, the cats ass aka a tea towel grip! post-51115-0-53186900-1356830207.jpgpost-51115-0-31621100-1356830230.jpg

 

Here's the design so far, hoping to start on a CAD model soon if i can find some time.

 

Let me know what you think, feedback on the design or sketch much appreciated.

 

post-51115-0-76770800-1356830601_thumb.jpg

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Looking great! What program are you using for your sketches? I would suggest maybe adding additional compartments or utilizing for storage the space above where the pens are stored. Although it's a minor detail, I'll still ask since perhaps it might spark more thoughts for you: How is the tablet being held in place?

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Thanks.

Its drawn in Sketchbook Pro, i find it much quicker than Photoshop. The space above the pens etc is for mood board space and also needed to get the pens in and out. If i get the chance to model it i'll work out the exact amount of space and try to optimize it.

Haven't come up with a universal holder for the tablet yet, so for now it would be clips like most cases. I guess they could be sold as accessories which from a commercial point of view = £$£$£$£! I'll keep thinking about that one, would be nice to have a universal system.

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