Design Process Gallery

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At 7TH we take a hands on approach to designing and making, bringing ideas to life as quickly as possible and testing every design through prototypes, test rigs and digital design tools.

Foam model mockups of a handheld product. The final design ended up looking completely different to all of these because we learned an enormous amount of valuable information by putting these models into the hands of real end users during our initial user research phase.

Foam model mockups of a handheld product. The final design ended up looking completely different to all of these because we learned an enormous amount of valuable information by putting these models into the hands of real end users during our initial user research phase.

Product visualisations can be an incredibly powerful tool to help demonstrate what the end product may look like, and to help build up initial feedback, support, enthusiasm and even investment around a new design.

Product visualisations can be an incredibly powerful tool to help demonstrate what the end product may look like, and to help build up initial feedback, support, enthusiasm and even investment around a new design.

Sometimes a simple sketch is all that's needed to communicate an idea, and to drive it right through to final design.

Sometimes a simple sketch is all that's needed to communicate an idea, and to drive it right through to final design.

Detailing and finish count for a lot, especially with installations such as this one for Selfridges in London. A simple but utterly beautiful and engaging concept is the other key ingredient!

Detailing and finish count for a lot, especially with installations such as this one for Selfridges in London. A simple but utterly beautiful and engaging concept is the other key ingredient!

3D printing (also known as rapid prototyping) is a fantastic tool for iterating a design forward, each version incorporating new elements and improvements from the previous version of the design. And if you choose the correct material, these prototypes can be more useful than many people expect. These casings show a few different stages of development from a project to develop open source wearable sensor products for Nokia and Burton Snowboarding.

3D printing (also known as rapid prototyping) is a fantastic tool for iterating a design forward, each version incorporating new elements and improvements from the previous version of the design. And if you choose the correct material, these prototypes can be more useful than many people expect. These casings show a few different stages of development from a project to develop open source wearable sensor products for Nokia and Burton Snowboarding.

Final batch of prototypes of wearable bluetooth sensors for Nokia Burton Push snowboarding project. Each wearable device is made up from open source softwares and readily available electronic components, water resistant 3D printed SLS nylon casings with impact resistant auto-painted finish, laser-cut stainless steel front plates, and custom fittings for attaching to body, clothing and snowboard equipment.

Final batch of prototypes of wearable bluetooth sensors for Nokia Burton Push snowboarding project. Each wearable device is made up from open source softwares and readily available electronic components, water resistant 3D printed SLS nylon casings with impact resistant auto-painted finish, laser-cut stainless steel front plates, and custom fittings for attaching to body, clothing and snowboard equipment.

In the early stages of any project comes several moments where ideas need to be proliferated until every single possible option has been put down, compared and selected/discounted. A series of brainstorms and concept generation sessions are used to create these, and it uses up a lot of post-it notes! What's always really fascinating in these sessions is how concepts from early brainstorms can trigger off whole new areas to explore, and how at the end of these sessions, patterns and groups of ideas start to emerge as clear directions in which the design can proceed.

In the early stages of any project comes several moments where ideas need to be proliferated until every single possible option has been put down, compared and selected/discounted. A series of brainstorms and concept generation sessions are used to create these, and it uses up a lot of post-it notes! What's always really fascinating in these sessions is how concepts from early brainstorms can trigger off whole new areas to explore, and how at the end of these sessions, patterns and groups of ideas start to emerge as clear directions in which the design can proceed.

For early ideas, a sketch prototype can be even quicker, and a lot more valuable than a pencil sketch in helping to assess and develop an initial concept. This model is one of approximately 15 models that were generated at the early stages of a project looking at shelving systems, and it only took around 10 minutes to create. The design that led on from the outcomes of all the models created during this sketch prototyping session is now patented and in mass production.

For early ideas, a sketch prototype can be even quicker, and a lot more valuable than a pencil sketch in helping to assess and develop an initial concept. This model is one of approximately 15 models that were generated at the early stages of a project looking at shelving systems, and it only took around 10 minutes to create. The design that led on from the outcomes of all the models created during this sketch prototyping session is now patented and in mass production.

Computer visualisation of the folding wheelchair wheel looks-like, works like prototype, produced just before construction of the actual prototype took place.

Computer visualisation of the folding wheelchair wheel looks-like, works like prototype, produced just before construction of the actual prototype took place.

Engineering drawings are an essential tool in communicating the most important information to manufacturers and makers, whether for a prototype, a finished design, the entire design or a particular component.

Engineering drawings are an essential tool in communicating the most important information to manufacturers and makers, whether for a prototype, a finished design, the entire design or a particular component.

A selection of components form the first folding wheels looks-like, works like prototype. These parts are precision cut from aircraft grade aluminium by CNC mill. Some components are designed to be assembled manually, whilst others are designed to be assembled into a single welded component as shown at the top of the image.

A selection of components form the first folding wheels looks-like, works like prototype. These parts are precision cut from aircraft grade aluminium by CNC mill. Some components are designed to be assembled manually, whilst others are designed to be assembled into a single welded component as shown at the top of the image.

User studies should never only be performed at the start and end of a design project. By iterating a continuous series of demonstrable design prototypes throughout the design process, from initial mockups right through to pre-production prototypes, users can evaluate and provoke throughout the entire development cycle. This makes it almost impossible to end up with a design that disappoints when it goes on sale.

User studies should never only be performed at the start and end of a design project. By iterating a continuous series of demonstrable design prototypes throughout the design process, from initial mockups right through to pre-production prototypes, users can evaluate and provoke throughout the entire development cycle. This makes it almost impossible to end up with a design that disappoints when it goes on sale.


7TH Design & Invention
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