Tuesday, August 12, 2008

mini10 is back

The CN Stealth helmet is a concept for F1 racing driver’s. The major advantage of this design is that it is a rear entry helmet. This increases the support around the neck as traditionally top entry helmets have to be wide enough to fit over the driver’s head and ears. The increased size of the visor also provides TV fans a better insight into the driver’s face and expressions, an important part of the drama of sport.

VPatch Central Monitoring System. V-Patch is a sophisticated technology platform that monitors a range of vital signs from patients over wireless networks in real time while the patient goes about their daily lives.

I have a great Mini10 to share with you tonight featuring Industrial Designer Lorrin Windahl.

Lorrin is a young woman on a mission, a talented designer with a drive to make a difference and participate in making change to the world. She is one of those people who think outside the square and loves to continually dream about the next challenge. Unlike many of us, Lorrin generally follows through and throws herself in to sink or swim. I know, as I have watched her over the years as she's grown and blossomed.

Hope you enjoy this mini10 with my little sister!

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m an industrial designer living and working in Melbourne, Australia. I work full-time at CobaltNiche, a product design & engineering consultancy, as a senior designer and project leader. I am also currently completing my master’s degree in industrial design. Previously I’ve worked in small & large manufacturing environments and lectured in industrial design.

In 2004 I decided to quit my job as an industrial designer and head to Uganda, in East Africa, as a volunteer. I was placed in a rural village in eastern Uganda called Bufumbo. Here I lived in a single room mud hut without running water and electricity for 8 months. I worked in a primary and secondary school and organised community events that focused on health issues such as HIV/AIDS & teenage pregnancy. As a result of this experience I now have a strong interest in design for need rather than want.

Recently, this led me to develop a non-profit organisation called Designers with Soul. The aim of the organisation is to provide design services to underserved communities worldwide and to promote design and how it can make a difference.

How did you come to be a designer / creator?

It was either a designer or become an out of work actress! And after, in an audition, I was asked to stop midway through an out of tune rendition of "Tomorrow" from the musical Annie I think it was probably the right decision.

How do you go about starting new projects / creations (what is your process?)

Generally my ideas come to me at 2am when I’d much rather be fast asleep!! The ideas for my own projects usually stem from problems that I encountered or witnessed while in Uganda. I do a lot of research after I’ve identified the problem. This includes looking at how the user group interacts with the product, why they use it, what problems currently exist, what else is on the market etc. Usually I start to generate some concepts while I'm still researching the problem.

What inspires you in life?

I am inspired by people who are motivated to create change. People who put people before profit. These are the people, I think, who really make a difference in this world.
I am also inspired by the people of Uganda. They are such a welcoming and friendly people in spite of all the hardships they endure. They have really helped me to put my life in perspective.

What are your favourite materials to work with?

As an industrial designer a lot of my work revolves around plastic. About 70% of the commercial products that I have designed are made out of plastic and have been injection moulded.

Water Container Conceptual Design

That said, on my own projects, I also have a strong interest in clay. Recently I designed and prototyped several clay cooking stoves for Uganda. I love using handmade clay processes that allow me to shape the clay. I love the direct contact with the material and how you have to nurture it into a shape. And the result is usually a little bit of a surprise!!

Name your top 5 websites

Obviously Designers with Soul - http://www.designerswithsoul.org/ - Got to love self promotion! And it is the first and only website I have ever designed and developed.

Yanko Design - http://www.yankodesign.com/ – I love looking through this concept design website to see what other people are doing

This blog! Since Fiona has now moved from Melbourne to Adelaide it is an easy way to keep up to date with what she is doing.

BEN Namibia website – www.benbikes.org.za/namibia– an organisation that is doing great things in Namibia

Paul Polak - http://www.paulpolak.com/ - such an inspirational bloke

What is your most treasured possession?

I think it would have to be hot water. After bathing in cold tubs of water for 8 months I really do appreciate it now. And as a result I may well be responsible for Australia’s water shortage problem!!

Who is your current favourite designer / creator?

Who can go passed danish furniture designer Arne Jacobsen and his Egg chair? I love it but unfortunately can't afford it! And for inspiration I think Paul Polak is a great example of how good design can help to reduce the effects of poverty.

What do you most enjoy about the city / town you live in?

I love the creativity and diversity of Melbourne. Everywhere you go there is some form of creative expression – whether it is the architecture of Federation Square, the wall art in the city laneways or the roadside artworks on the freeways. It is just a really great city to live in if you long to be inspired and motivated as a designer. (Sorry Fiona!!)

Tell us where we can find your work.

I was recently announced as the joint winner of the Iken Workstation of the Future design competition. You can see my winning design in the September edition of Inside magazine or shortly on the Iken website.

Websites where you can see my work:

Australian Open Tennis 2008 Umpire Chair - CobaltNiche

1 comment:

Jo said...

What a fantastic workstation! I needed one of those when I was doing my degree!


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