By displaying my product at the Festival of Design & Technology, I get exposure to a number of businesses in a short period of time that would not be possible otherwise. The festival is a great way to get the experience of presenting at a professional level with a year’s worth of supporting work on a single project. For Product Design projects, we must create a hand-made, working prototype, i.e. all the parts must function fully, including any electronics. As a result, the festival is a great place to show the level of craftsmanship required in a prototype. The Festival of Design & Technology is a great way to see the best that the Bournemouth Uni Design framework has to offer and there’s a great atmosphere. Also, I think it’s a great way to celebrate the completion (and survival) of the course with all my peers.
The best project I’ve seen was from last year’s design show: Douglas Powell designed and prototyped a bicycle ambulance trailer. The use of materials was great and he had a great focus on the humanistic issues surrounding sub Saharan Africa, such as accessibility.
In a single sentence, my final year project is a page turner for pianists. It allows a pianist to turn a page of music to reveal the next quickly without removing a hand from the keys. This allows the music to continue uninterrupted. Minimal allows the pianist to tap a pedal on the floor that communicates via a wireless signal to a box that will complete the page turn. I chose this project as music has always been a passion of mine from a young age, performing in orchestras, choirs and recitals. I loved the idea that I could combine my love of design with my love of music.
There is currently nothing on the market that solves the design problem of turning pages with a specific focus on pianists, so there is significant market potential with my project. However, my project is aimed at sheet music which is slowly being replaced with electronic alternatives (like iPads etc.), so further research will need to be carried out before any commercialisation occurs.
During my placement year at Kesslers International I got the opportunity to get involved with some project management work, which I really enjoyed. I would love to pursue a career in project management; it’s only as a direct result of my course that I had exposure to a career seemingly unrelated to design.
I think my top highlight from BU has to be working as a night mentor on the Summer Schools programme. The beach barbecues were great and I had so much fun! I really enjoyed talking to the young adults and giving them a taste of university life. In terms of my course, a highlight has got to be my time in the workshops making prototypes by hand and seeing my designs come to life.
If you’re thinking of studying a design or engineering course, be prepared for a lot of hard work, make the most of every opportunity, whether work or social, and go to the beach as much as possible!
By Lucy Edwards, BSc (Hons) Product Design
If you’d like to see Lucy’s project and many more, register online for the Festival of Design & Technology.