Not Much

There are occasions in design, when creative euphoria overwhelms us; The stink

of resin, the sterility of our latex gloved hands, even the pinch of a recently bandaged

fingertip are little distractions to confident hands. At these times, we are unforgiving, the

size of our felt tip micron choice is actually relevant to our sketch, and our design is

crystal. I am irreverently unapologetic when I say that last week was not one of these


One of my favorite anecdotes to tell as an industrial design student is of our

sketching professor last semester. I asked him: “Do you ever rough out a quick vis.

sketch in front of a client?”, he made a point of clearing his throat and recovered from

his feigned shock, deadpanning, “…you never show them how the magic happens”. I

cling to this, imagining that perhaps the emotion of that moment, and the simple clarity

of his words would punctuate critical moments in the design process. Unfortunately, the

duration of last week was spent largely in calculations and estimations of the materials

we would need to construct half-scale models for the following Friday such that it was

punctuated less by the soundness our sketching professor’s words in solid, grounded

periods and more in the comedic misery of a precondition mark. We compiled several

lists and placed several orders.

After wading through the muddy incompetence of Houston’s ‘best’ industrial

suppliers, we finally gathered all our needed materials by the latter part of the week to

begin construction the following Sunday. Perhaps optimism is the prefix of progress and

this is when the magic happens but as it stands, we won’t be starting any magic without

a step back, a deep breath, and another cup of coffee.

By Aaron Mceuen

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