michael tran industrial design portfolio 2018
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wake up! for MUJI
a time keeping device that fits the MUJI brand and that alarms the user via a vibrating ring
many college students live together in cramp areas. because of their lack of sleep, many need a very loud alarm to wake up in time for classes. These overly loud alarms often unneccessarily wake up other room mates and ruin their sleep just so one can wake up.
Gabe is a sophomore in college who dorms with four other people. He cranks his alarm all the way up to wake him up after his four hour â€œsleepâ€?. He needs an alarm that will easily wake him up but not his room mates.
gettinâ€™ sketchy form exploration through paper and sketchbook pro. Finding out what different ways could I keep track of time? How could I make an alarm?
inspiration I wanted to capture the warmth of a sunrise as well as the vast emptiness of a volcano crater
mock it up
form exploration through physical models made of cardboard, yellow foam, and modulan. What form would fit MUJI?
makinâ€™ it to improve my model making skills and precision, I learned how to use the mill to make my project
how itâ€™s done to work the timer, put on the ring. then spin the center to however many hours you would like the timer to go for. wait for the clock to reach zero to make the ring vibrate and return the ring to turn off the alarm.
(sound) the alarm with this project, I was able to learn about true minimalism. many “minimalist” designs I’ve seen have really been lazy without anything special about them. MUJI is one of the few brands that I’ve seen with true minimalism. I read the book “white” about the subject by the MUJI designer, Kenya hara. I also learned how to reduce my designs to their purest form. form truly became function.
thermometer designing a thermometer for pre teens to use on themselves when home alone
Kevin is sick and alone at home. However, every ear thermometer seems scary to figure out how to use. Kevin is scared that he might hurt himself while using the thermometer. Kevin needs a thermometer that is simple, friendly, and comfortable so he can easily figure out how to use the thermometer on his own.
gettinâ€™ sketchy sketching different ways I could make the shape of the thermometer to be friendly for a twelve year old yet not overly friendly so Kevin will feel more grown up for taking care of himself.
mock it up discovering ergonomic directions with various design directions using polyurethane foam. this way, I can find the most comfortable shape for Kevin to use on his own with either of his hands.
inspiration I found that shapes of the human body such as the ear turned out to be ergonomic in the hand.
makinâ€™ it what looks more like plastic than actual plastic? I took a big risk and used thermoplastic pellets to make the final model. to mold the thermoplastic, I melted the pellets with hot water, then I wrapped it around a foam base.
take the risk for this project, I learned about different model making approaches by taking a risk with thermoplastic instead of traditional modulan. I also learned more about ergonomics in order to make the thermometer comfortable in both hands
bike making a bike completely in solidworks and rendering in keyshot
makinâ€™ it to make this bike assembly, I custom made twenty inidividual pieces including the wheel, frame, handlebar, etc.
hanger create a hanger out of a single lasercut piece of e-flute cardboard
gettinâ€™ sketchy sketching different locking mechanisms, forms, and things to hang
mock it up figuring out how cardboard folds into itself and tweaking placement of holes and perforations to make sure everything locks into place
instructions for how to fold the hanger from the lasercut blank
problem solved I hated that clothes looked nothing like how they would on a body whenever they were hung. with my hanger, the curves simulate a real body underneath the garments
lesson learned for this project, I learned how to plan out and think ahead for a project with extreme accuracy. this was especially true because I had to know exactly where the holes and perforations had to be or else the whole thing would not work.
egg drop a group project with Jacob McMullen create packaging that can protect an egg from a fifty foot drop while still fitting the “Justin’s Nut Butter” brand language
sketching with Jacob to discover different forms that could increase time in the air (to slow down the egg midair) while still withstanding the impact
mock it up exploring different ways of fitting the egg and effective ways of protecting the egg from impact
inspiration Jacob and I really liked how the packaging for these nuts were clear and honest both literally and symbolically.
speed form casting and molding a plaster speed form from a chavant clay buck
gettinâ€™ sketchy form exploration through sketching in whether it should be fast or slow, slender or wide, etc.
mock it up experimenting different aesthetic directions with clay and yellow foam models
inspiration I wanted to capture the fast aggression of the drill but directly contrast it with the slow relaxing speed of a leaf
I learned how to cast and mold with plaster as well as learn how to mold chavant clay.
bonus! more projects that Iâ€™ve done on my own personal time
designing graphics to be hand painted and stained onto skateboards and longboards.
designing and selling t shirts
thanks for reading!