Monday, October 25, 2010

Week 9 - Design and Production - Shapeways Arrives!

Just in time for tomorrow my stuff arrived from Shapeways today!

Week 8 - Jewelry 3 - After Action Review of Containment Project

I have to start off saying, this was a really rough project for me. I didn't expect it to become what it did. I forgot that it was something "for school" and it became this daunting, consuming task to create a proper memorial for my grandmother. As for my goals, looking at the final product, I couldn't be happier. When I see this, I can tell it is something she would have loved and it has this delicacy yet, rough impression that is really what I was going after.

In a more critical light, I feel that my craftsmanship needs work and I think some of this will come with more experience. I feel that I have not invested myself enough in metalsmithing to this point to really be able to produce the type of products I want to, I am not going to let this stop me though. I need to learn to solder better and learn to file better. Those were two parts that really held me back. I also had a lot of trouble with clasps and hinges and there is no excuse for not being able to get it done. I need more practice, but I also need to realize that everything isn't just going to come together every single time.

I made a lot of maquettes and I felt properly prepared that way, so I am not upset with the result. I think that I did not realize the need for a closing mechanism. I originally planned for the gut to completely contain the project and seal it off, but realistically it needs a closure.

I may not have had the "show piece" I wanted to create, but here is what I learned:

1. Filing is the most important part of a project. If you do not file it correctly it will not work.
2. Its not just this or not just that, don't time yourself - thank you Rachel, you don't know how much this helped me
3. Take your time.
4. It takes 5 times doing something perfectly to get it right, it probably won't go right
5. Keep everything clean and properly fluxed at all times or it will not flow, the soldering rules are for a reason
6. Practice makes perfect.

Week 8 - Jewelry 3 - Crowdsourcing

What is Crowdsourcing?
Crowd sourcing is a new trend surfacing all over the internet were companies actively seek out groups of people to run ideas by. It is a collective calling of ideas and reviews. Wikipedia defines crowdsourcing as, 

"Crowdsourcing is the act of outsourcing tasks, traditionally performed by an employee or contractor, to a large group of people or community (a crowd), through an open call." 

I think this is a very generic definition. Crowdsourcing makes your client/customer a part of the action. Crowdsourcing is a newer trend that developed roughly four years ago in Wired Magazine. Basically it said that electronics have become so cheap and easy to make that companies are taking advantage of releasing them into the market and waiting for the feedback they recieve on the the item before making changed or re-releasing the model. They are also taking the ideas from this feedback and putting it into the next year's model. 

Crowdsourcing layed dormant for a few years and exploded this year with major companies getting into the idea. Recently, the GAP released a logo without word to the public and waited for feedback from the populous. This was met with mix reactions. 

Crowdsourcing heavily relies on social media to make it spread and travel. It often employs tactics such as twitter feeds, facebook links and blogs to gain feedback from an informed audience that knows of their products. It also allows for a specific target audience to have insight gained from.