With this project, I was nominated Design Talant of the year in Norway, 2017.
Product design, Assistive device, Autonomy , Buxton Prototype
Light is essential in our lives not only sunlight, but also the light in our homes. It helps us set a mood, create an atmosphere, and help us see when there is darkness. We often take light for granted, but when we face a situation where we cannot control the light in our homes due to illness, injury, or disability, our autonomy fails.
Assistive devices today that maintain or improve an individual’s autonomy can be stigmatizing. Their durable and functional design enhances the feeling of one´s disability, rather than appearing as universal design for home use.
The purpose of this design project was to propose a solution to one of the many daily issues that can accure when situations or products are not inclusive.
Frame is a bedside lamp created to give individuals with reduced hand functionality autonomy in choosing light. It consists of two modules; the LED-globe, and the foot. The tactile design makes the light module easy to remove from the foot and to be placed wherever needed. The foot is designed to naturally find it´s centre of balance and come to a rest after usage. By applying a touch function to the LED-globe, the lamp is easier to turn on and off.
The name Frame comes from the saying Frame of mind, which means” a temporary state of mind or feeling”, and symbolizes the autonomy and empowerment that is created for the split second when turning on the lamp Frame.
Human- centered Design
By following a human-cenetered design process, the design decisions were based on observations, insights, pain-points and evaluations based on iterative interactions with the user group.
By using human-centred methods such as natural-and controlled observations, interviews, and user testing, this design process kept the users’ needs in focus. By combining them with inspirations from the luminescent marine life, Frame is a bedside lamp created to give individuals with reduced hand functionality autonomy in choosing light.
In this project, observations from hospitals,
group housing for people with brain-damage and sensory houses were made to understand and define the situation.
The design was tested with patients and users from the different institutes and organisations.
Though a comprehensive mapping process, I made a deep dive into the lives of people with physical challanges. This led me to finding the design challenge and also patterns and opportunities of the design challenge.
The insights made from mapping the observations, interviews, and testings fostered quick and inexpensive sketches, leading to three different concepts.
The investment in a prototype is larger than that in a sketch. A prototype should refine, answer and resolve the design challenge rather than explore, question and provoke a design solution. They are less disposable because they take longer to build but are needed for user testing with the user group so to refine, answer and resolve the design challange based on the user.
Through an iterative process, the three concepts were tested with individuals with reduced hand functionality. By seing how the users interacted with the different prototypes, an understanding of which concept was most intuitive and had the most opportunities was found. The third concept was the most intuitive concept that had the best opportunities to furfill the design requirements of being:
- Easy to handle.
- Able to turn on and off easily.
- Not get warm.
- Create a pleasant atmospheret.
The design choices were based on the iterations with the user group. By testing different tactile design patterns, material and shapes, the final prototype of Frame was created.
Since a human-centered design process was followed, the technical drawing were not created to aid the prototyping process but to create a technical production plan.
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