Project Description

One of the keys to getting a good handle of Product Design is to experiment with Materiality before going deep into Design Modeling. Styrofoam and Thermocol are ideal materials to explore form and shape when conceptualizing new product ideas. “Beginning Product Design” is a workshop that will use foam sculpting techniques and thermocol carving methods to investigate novel ways of creating Product Prototypes, efficiently and safely. This will eventually enable us to understand what physical 3D modeling is all about – which we can then extrapolate to further iterations.

We have partnered with SVP Laser Technologies ( to offer participants access to their newest range of Product Prototyping Devices: Thermocol Cutting Machines. Since Thermocol/Polystyrene is light, strong and easy to work with, we will investigate abstract as well as figurative carving using SVP Laser’s range of Hot Wire Cutters – as a way to realize various forms in product sculpturing.

You will learn how to:
– Translate 2D design (sketches) into 3D design (physical mockups)
– Learn how to create complex shapes quickly using hand skills
– Operate a specialized hot wire knife/cutter to manipulate polystyrene/foam
– Use numbers and simple measurements to dimension your carved sculpture
– Understand how to apply post-processing techniques on a thermocol model using rasps, files and abrasive paper
– Get hands on exposure to Aesthetics and Ergonomics with respect to Product Design
– Implement advanced Design Thinking in a team build

The entire emphasis of the workshop will be focused on practice with guidance. Participants will receive a comprehensive Safety Induction before using the hot carving knife to work on their product prototypes or trying any post-processing techniques. Technical Experts from SVP Laser will be on-hand to mentor participants during the entire build.