Issuu on Google+

Module THREE Presentation

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


You can go your own way Module Two was an interesting and useful exploration of ideas between a partnership. Ultimately, our form failed to meet expectations in terms of ‘wearability’ and ‘dynamic movement’. Module Three was about turning over a new leaf, whilst using the things learned previously to guide a new design. Our initial concept was ‘one point controlling all else,’ however it was felt that this was overly-complex and limiting our design conceptions. Thus, the new concept was derived as : “A smooth exterior revealing a jagged interior”

How is it possible to conceive a ‘smooth exterior’ with a ‘jagged interior’? Top left: if the heart is the jagged inside, and our body is the smooth facade, where the heart’s perimeter extrudes from the body should be exaggerated. Principally, above and below the arm Middle: If one side of the brain is ‘creative’ and the other ‘logical,’ then why can’t this be represented on the body? Right: A hood might cover the harshness of the face or our body language in one direction. If the ‘hood’ were to be rotated, then it might provide us with double the protection.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Looking inward and glaring outward From the very beginning of Module Two, the concept of ‘emotional personal space’ has been one that internalised the human spirit and was reflected in the models. Whilst not letting go of that very basic idea, any new model for Module Three would also address its exterioir context. This would be a form that was derived from the ‘inner human,’ but reflected on the outside. If this ‘second skin’ was to be a cover for our often uncontrollable emotions, then it would inevitably have to survey who and what was in its realm. So, perhaps the new form could provide a second set of eyes?

Can the form look inward as well as respecting its outer context? Left: Derived from the same concept as the left and right brain, a smooth skin only covers part of our jagged inside. This is metaphorical for the way that we can mask emotions, but just below the surface the truth always shows. Top: Having rotated the ‘hood’ 90 degrees, the wearer is now provided with a second set of eyes. Perhaps this allows the wearer to see the jagged inside of someone around them.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


An effortless curve Inspired by case study buildings such as the Haesley Nine Bridges Golf Club House that was featured in the Week 8 lecture, I wanted my design to flow effotlessly around the body. It was to be ‘fluid’ in design. However, it had to be clear to me where the model started and finished; this was after all a second skin that could very easily be taken away. As such, there is a stark juxtaposition between the curved lines and the straight edge. At the same time, I had to think of a way to represent the jagged innards of the human form. As I had already established, by extending the radius of the heart, sharpness revealed itself above and below the shoulder. This initial ideas placed the ‘shard’ below the arm, where they might be hidden when the arm was placed in a normal position. However, I then thought about what the positions of the arm connotated. When arms are by the side of the body, a person looks unresponsive and cold. However, when they are opened (as if to warmly embrace another) they are welcoming. It was decided then that the shards shoukd be visible in the ‘unresponsive’ pose.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Smooth curves put up an approachable facade. The form was designed to be worn over the shoulder, at a 90 degree angle to the face, so as to provide a second ‘front’. From the side, the form seems opaque, but looking towards its face, it is clear it has depth and texture. The final model instead flips this form so that its face is against the chest. See left

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Exploring movement A solid form represents well the ideas I have in mind, however it fails to interact with the emotions, environments and body language at play. This system - profile and section - is an inherently rigid one. By building up layers of bracing one upon the other, strength is inevitably derived. However, the challenge was now almost contradictory. The model was to retain its essential form, but it was also to move! Having partnered with a panel and fold system during Module Two, it became possible to subtly merge the two systems in order to allow ‘profile and section’ to be flexible. Having experiemtned with folding both the x and y planes of the profile and section model, it was apparent that movement was indeed possible. Nonetheless, I felt that there was too much allowance for movement, and thus the model soon lost its form.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Application Digital sectioning- as reviewed by Iwamoto in week seven’s reading, “streamlines the process of making...parallel sections”. Not only is it an efficient construction method - it has been widely used by designers the world over. Rhino allows us to create amazing 3D forms with intersection between profile and section, but when challenged to create a moving form it was very much up to me as the user. Whilst the initial prototype allowed movement between the planes and joints, it heavily distorted the form. At this point, I believed that by conserving the essential form and providing a folded hinge between the upper and lower part, I would be able to create a interesting and clearly definied form. But this was not to be! The material I had chosen - 1.8mm boxboard did not allow for the movement I wanted and was far to delicate when etched at the joints. Also, because the bottom of the model was less supported than the top, joining the two parts proved impossible. The bottom simply did not support the top. On top of that, the ‘wow’ factor just wasn’t there. Back to the drawing board!

Right: The top section of the first prototype. To allow for the solidity and rigidity of the model, folding sections were not provided for between the planes. Instead, a folding hinge (just seen at the very top right) would connect two forms and provide movement. Nevertheless, this didn’t provide the effect desired.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Making movement ‘dynamic’ After the initial prototype, I found that the movement my model allowed was only very basic. Primarily, it allowed the model to be flexible (to a degree) but it really demonstrated no visual effect. The challenge from here on in was to make this movement ‘dynamic,’ or ‘wow’ without compromising the form of the model and the original direction of the concept. Incorporating the system experiemented with previously, I pared back the movement to only take effect in one direction. As the designer, my decision was to retain some rigidity because I believe it is essential to the given system. The ‘shards’ were the ‘jagged’ elements. They could be any random shape or form, as long as they illustrated clearly the effect of the movement. The initial prototype attached these to the form as additional elements, but in the resultant model they are indelibly part of the form.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Rhino Version Three

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Revisions and decisions The first FabLab-built prototype was far too large and disproportionate to the human form. There were multiple pieces that instead of impressing, actually overwhelmed the wearer and the audience. As such, my decision with this refined model was to simplify and enhance. The reading by Kolarevic in week six helped me leap these challenging fabrication hurdles. The process of design, fabrication, and construction were well described and comparitively made my work look easy! For this reason, I questioned some of the relevance of this reading to a first-year university subject. Nonetheless, less contours were designed, so as to make both the fabrication process easier, as well as to make the form more userfriendly for the wearer. Sections along the x plane were solidifed to allow for folding joints between the planes.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Revision 3 Fabrication

In order to allow for flexibility in the system, folding planes were added between the notches. Despite the system prototype having radial folds, this model has straight folds. This allows for movement in more than one direction, whilst retaining a visible form. The folds also shape the shards, which appear from the top of the model as the wearer felxes their arm in a horizontal or vertical direction. As can be seen, the pieces are still relatively large, but once the folds are accounted for the model shrinks significantly. The dynamic movement is accounted for in the inward-folding shards, arising with the expansion of the model. Nonetheless, it was found that so many folds accounted for a great deal too much flexibility. The model’s essential form was difficult to maintain and the dynamic movement was hard to demonstrate.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Rhino Version Four

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Retrospective design Having presented the third revision only to find that its reception was less than warm, I was encouraged to rethink the placement of my model on the human form. Admittedly, even I struggled to cemprehend the journey I had taken to arrive at the on-shoulder location, and as such broadened my thinking. Accidentally, but rather by experiment, I placed my second revision over my head, ceovering the shoulder. This was by far a better representation of the original concept, ‘emotional personal space,’ and was able to better reflect the idea of a smooth facade and jagged innards. There was little wrong with the second conception, but it had been positioned incorrectly on the body. A little refinement and the project was given new life.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Revision 4 Fabrication

Key elements from the past three prototypes were retained for this final model. Nonetheless, they have been rearranged and redesigned to suit the human form and the desired movement. This time, the dynamic movement is revealed by the manual tearing away of the model, to reveal the jagged inside that lies beneath the surface. The form has remained almost the same to the original conception, but having been relocated to the chest, different aspects and perspectives of the model can be appreciated. The bulging chest may contain pentup anger or overwhelming emotion, to be revealed when the skin is removed.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Deployment As the wearer pulls away the second skin (splitting at the chest), the spikes reveal themselves; and so too the real jagged, ever-changing emotions of the wearer.

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


BIBLIOGRAPHY Iwamoto, L 2009, Digital fabrications: architectural and material techniques, Princeton Architectural Press, New York, Selected Extracts Kolarevic, B, 2003 “Digital Production� in Architecture in the Digital Age - Design and Manufacturing , Spon Press, London, pp30-54

Virtual Environments Maxwell Bracher 636699


Module 3 Presentation Max