Design Different: Re-thinking the Design Process for 3D Printing: By Jonathan Rowley, Design Director of Digits2Widgets
Digits2Widgets is a studio concerned with digitization, CAD modification and 3D printing of projects for the arts and industry.
Jonathan Rowley, the Design Director of D2W, raised important moral issues which inevitably accompany the rapidly developing additive manufacturing technologies. What would the main product of home 3D printers be – another level of pollution and albatross poisoning, pointless kids’ toys and experiments or an opening door to creative ideas coming from the broad public? If a home-made 3D printed object is taken out of context and is not sitting next to the printer which made it, and thus expressing the process of creation and the technical advancement, how exciting would it really be?
Three main categories of 3D printed objects were described by Jonathan:
- Replication, which can serve as a test of coherency and efficiency of forms, and also help the understanding of structures.
- Replication and modification, which is based on creating new objects inspired by nature’s perfect forms, or by improving already existing projects.
- Original designs, or innovative ideas that actually do and mean something. Giving examples of such original designs his studio has worked on, he presented utilization of the material properties in 3D printed objects in the design of glass frames without hinges, learning how to think and build in components, as opposed to perceiving everything as one solid object (the Bird House project by Saint H) [http://www.saint-h.com/], and clever outside finishes of commercial objects, implemented for the production of the MakieLab dolls [http://www.makielab.com/].
After that inspiring talk we had the chance to have a brief chat with Jonathan regarding the issues he raised in his lecture, and also shedding more light on colouring of the beautiful objects presented on the D2W stand at the 3D Print Show. We hope and look forward to further contact with the D2W friendly team.