• Introduction

    In "Object/Experience" course, we will explore how the choices of form and material affect our interactions with the physical world. Perceptual approaches to design consider form as something that affords a sensory-motor experience. We combine such approaches with traditional product design methods such as sketching of object's geometrical form. We use simple materials such as paper and foam to explore the potential of the three-dimensional forms. You will learn how to study and to design physical objects so that they trigger a sensory experience you wish to create.

    Key Topics:

    • Design Affordances
    • Sketching for Interaction Designers: Objects and their Use, Storytelling and Storyboards, Technical Drawing ( Section, Plan, Axonometric drawing, Perspective )
    • Patterning > Paper modelling
    • Product Design Werkstatt Introduction, Z-Tech course ( laser-cutting etc.)
    • Concept and design of tangible interactive prototype ( Sketching, Photo Series, Text )

    • Florian Wille
    • Verena Ziegler

  • Preparation

    On your first day (Tue 18th of Sep), bring an object with you that has the following qualities:

    • you have a personal connection to it and you tell a short story about it
    • it should be disposable enough so your parents won't  disinherit you if you loose it
    • it should be geometrically complex and be comprised of different or interesting materials – the weirder the better

    Also, bring drawing tools you feel comfortable with. We recommend an HB grade pencil, but you can bring additional gear if you want.

    Be up to date - the Object Experience Calender as .ical
    Connect with the filer server: smb://fileredu.ad.zhdk.ch/DDE and use your itz login

    Place your Documentation in your Folder on the filer server
    Guidelines on how to document (IAD wiki)

  • Exercise 1. Sketching Sensory Experience

    The goal of this exercise is to study an object through tactile experience it enables. The challenge is to sketch the sensory experience as it emerges: to put the sensations into words and into drawings. Students work in couples. One of the students is blindfolded. He or she is given an object to be explored through senses other than vision. Without saying the name of the object, the blindfolded person describes the sensations (soft, curved, warm, loud etc) caused through manipulation of the artifact.  The person who listens tries to put these words into sketches.

  • City Walk

    • 09.00 – Start @ Toni Areal (main Entrance)
    • 09.30 – Tour through Viadukt und parks – note and sketch affordances
    • 11.00 – Visit @dreipol
    • 12.30 – Visit @ service desk at Zürich Main Station
    • 13.00 – Lunch @ Polyterasse
    • 14.00 – ETH, Meeting with climate scientists and city planers
    • 16.30 – Debriefing @ Toni Areal, Visit of the Exhibition «Material als Experiment»
    • 17.00 – Visit of the Pe-Lang exhibition @ MuDA 

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  • Exercise 2. Sketching Form

    Using front and side views, sections, axonometric projection and/or prospective, the students technically represent an object.

  • Exercise 3. Sketching Function

    Students sketch the use of the object in a functional way. The human body or its parts (hand or foot) have to be represented. The result should be a drawn user manual.

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  • Exercise 4. Sketching Use-Missuse

    Students invent stories of the use and misuse of the object. The temporal aspect of the story comes into play - How does one represent cause-effect loops, emotional states etc.

  • Visit of the ZHdK Highlights Exhibition with Martin Dusek

    Fr. 21.09.2018 | Meeting at 16:00 in Room 5.D02

  • Exercise 5. Cut&Paste

    This exercise is an exploration of patterns, scale and repetition. It is composed of three steps:

    1. From a flat paper create a form by cutting, folding, or weaving it
    2. Using a repetition of the same element create a pattern or a new object
    3. Scale the same element into different sizes and connect them to create a new object

  • Low Level Introduction

    On Tuesday 2nd of October you'll have an introduction to the low level workshop with Armando Wehrli at the workshop gallery (ZT 3.E07-B Projektraum Low Level). Armando will pick you up, in front of the low level workshop. Those who already did the low level workshop & laser introduction, can skip the morning class and join in at 13:00 (same location). You are very welcome though to take part in the workshop introduction, as a refresher is always helpful.

    Be prepared to get dirty and dusty - so dress accordingly. Also, avoid clothes that are too baggy.

  • Exercise 6. Cube Expresssions

    Build 3 objects out of foam cubes [10x10x10cm]. Each must invite one of the following actions through form:

    • spin me
    • leave me alone
    • shake me
    • stretch me
    • complete me
    • inhale me
    • break me

  • Exercise 8. Light as Matter

    Create a concept for an interactive lamp. Adapt interactions and/or affordances from other contexts. One way of achieving that can be by giving existing objects a new function (ready mades). Build an experience prototype.

    HS18_OBJEX_Creative Speed Dating

    Final Presentation:

    Mind the following requirements for the presentation:
    • Duration per project: about 10 minutes
    • Time for questions and discussion: about 5 minutes
    • Bring all your physical mockups

    The title slide should contain the following information
    • Project title, Object Experience
    • Names, email addresses
    • IAD ZHDK 2018

    Ideas how to structure your presentation:
    • Your idea: What was your focus, why did you choose it?
    • Your process: What where your initial thoughts and how did your ideas change over the course of the project.
    • Your design: Describe your design decisions.
    • Your heart: Is there some detail you especially like or what would be the first thing to change?

    To document the experience of interacting with your light, a short video is the best medium. It should not be longer than 60 seconds and show how and in which context your light object is used.

    13:30 – Tamara, Roman, Paméla
    13:45 – Andreas F., Yami
    14:00 – Sonjoi, Charlotte, Andy B.
    // coffee break
    14:30 – Fabian, Andy, Sophie
    14:45 – Danu, Shafira
    15:00 – Zoe, Tim, Damaris
    15:20 Concluding discussion

  • Deliverables

    Final Presentation


    • Discover (research, inspiration )  // 2-4 slides
    • Design (initial idea, prozess, iterations,…) 2-4 slides
    • Deliver (final concept) // 4 slides


    Document the process and outcome of the following exercises

    • sketching
    • modules
    • cube expressions
    • material library
    • light as matter

  • Assessment

    What will be assessed

    Over all

    • commitment
    • progress / improvement


    • sketching
    • modules
    • cube expressions
    • material library
    • light as matter
      • concept
      • process
      • model building
      • outcome

    Documentation (please consult the Project documentation guidelines on the IAD Wiki)

    For positive grading, a minimum attendance 80% is required.

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