Products of Design welcomed Jessica Helfand—co-founder of Design Observer and Yale Lecturer in Design and Management—as a guest speaker this past Thursday. Rather than lecturing from a podium, she gave symposium-style comments on the state of design, followed by an informal and wide ranging question and answer session, as well as a reading from her new book, Design: The Invention of Desire.
Mobile technology has brought a new wave of communication into our lives, but we are now more likely to turn to our phones than to each other. To address this challenge, Products of Design student Kevin cook designed SOCIALIGHT—a phone-activated table lamp for a distraction-free dining experience.
On the afternoon of Saturday, September 16, the students of the MFA Products of Design department conducted a hackathon for RACKET—a grass-roots organization engaged in work around the topic of menstrual health. After a comprehensive briefing from Racket founders Caroline Angell and Margo Seibert, participants dove into four focus areas. Reimagining the kit, changing the conversation around mentruation, social media strategy, and policy.
It's finally here. After a summer of filming in California, the beloved Mythbusters franchise will reboot with two brand new hosts—one of whom is Jon Lung, Class of 2016. Popular Mechanics online has the first trailer for the show. It looks like it's going to be epic.
In her MFA thesis Dominion, Ailun Sai discusses the relationship between animals and humans. Through a series of design—including product design, experience design, and interaction design—Ailun encourages people to reflect on their role in the natural world and to question their perceived sense of superiority over animals.
We know that lots of you want to come to New York City to attend our November 10th Open House and Info Session, but we also know getting here can be a major expense. So today we’re proud to announce our first-ever “Open House Design Challenge”—a chance to help you out with airfare to New York City, expert portfolio reviews and application coaching from esteemed faculty, along with other surprises while you’re here!
Julia Lindpaintner’s thesis work was inspired by her own experience of serving on a grand jury in Manhattan during the summer of 2016. It profoundly changed her understanding of the judicial system, and in particular, the way she saw her role in it. “My mental model shifted,” Julia states. She further explains, “Instead of seeing the judicial system as an autonomous force over which I had no influence, I felt viscerally the way in which we, as citizens, are collectively responsible for the system and the outcomes it produces.”
Join us at this year's Open House and Information Session, taking place on Friday, November 10, 2017—from 2-5pm. Attendees will be able to meet faculty, alumni, and current students, see projects, learn about the program, tour the studio, classroom spaces, and Visible Futures Lab, and ask questions about life at Products of Design. Delicious refreshments will be shared throughout the session. Hope to see you there!
Hip-hop, basketball and street fashion formed the three pillars of cool for Oscar when he was a child. Common to all these phenomena was the ultimate commodified object of cool—the sneaker. And he loved sneakers. So, it is of no surprise that Oscar’s earliest memory of being or looking cool was attributed to a pair of Nike Air Jordan XI. This childhood photo of him with the Nike Swoosh shaved and dyed into the back of his head can attest to that.
Michael Lee Kenney’s master’s thesis Instigationism is built on a foundation of design work that is intended to incite physical activity in sedentary populations. By combining research insights from the fields of psychology, game design, behavioral economics, and immersive media, Kenney pushes us to reexamine our relationship with exercise.
For a long time, when Doug Fertig heard people talking about wanting to live a healthier life, he perceived a problem: the conversation would focus on building better habits around diet and exercise. Through personal experience and research, however, Doug knew that this was only part of the solution. Taking into consideration the fact that one in four people will suffer from a mental health issue in their life, he argues, "'making healthier choices' are not choices that are simply healthier for our body, but rather also healthier for our mind."
Dayoung’s thesis, Pygmalion, is about creating systems to empower people with social anxiety disorder. She aims to create the Pygmalion effect—also known as the “self-fulfilling prophecy”—to help people with social anxiety. The Pygmalion effect, named after an Ancient Greek myth of a sculptor falling in love with his own works that comes to life, is the phenomenon whereby high expectations and attentions positively affect the outcome of performance.
Conventional wisdom tells us that eco-anxiety—an indirect mental health impact of climate change—is preventing us from effectively responding to the threat of climate change. This form of anxiety is also marked by an existential worry about the future for oneself, children, and later generations. Karen Vellensky challenges this idea through her thesis, Good Grief: Inducing eco-anxiety as a call to climate action.
Will Lentz master’s thesis Eating Together: Explorations in an Anti-Social Food System promotes a resurgence in the social value of communal eating experiences. In a time when isolation and independence are increasingly common, Lentz offers products and provocations aimed at bringing people back together over food.
Andrea Cameron’s master’s thesis, Playing with Firebrands, explores student agency in education. Inspired by the work of progressive educators and student-centered design, the motivation was to incorporate principles from progressive education into public education. The objective was to take the best practices in privatized education and make them accessible to public schools.