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Chuan

A flat-package lamp that casts unique shadows.

Discipline

Industrial Design

Duration

Team

2 Weeks

Solo

The Prompt: Design lighting fixture that can be assembled and stored easily without the use of adhesives. 

 

Design Guidelines

Flat-Packable

Consists of pieces that can be assembled without adhesives and flat-packaged.

 

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Diffusing

Can effectively scatter the inner light, lessening its intensity for eye comfort.

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Unique

Eye-catching and standout as a lighting unit and piece of home décor.

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The Inspiration

I aimed to design a lamp that was both eye-catching and elegant for display within the home.

Thus, I drew inspiration from organic forms with smooth, graceful curves and unique patterns found in architecture and objects.

 

 

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Ideation

Concept One - "ORGANISMS"

Sketches were focused on including elegant curves that can interlock in interesting ways and completely envelope the light; inspired by animals and plants/fungi.

Concept Two - "GEOMETRIC"

Sketches were focused on exploring how I can manipulate and deconstruct geometric forms to create intrigue.

Concept Three - "SAILBOAT"

Sketches were focused on creating a whimsical and elegant form reminiscent of a sailboat for interesting light / shadow interplay.

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I decided to pursue the sailboat concept because I found the unique and evocative form compelling and was interested in exploring how I can further abstract it.

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Prototyping

Round One

The first prototype was mostly to gain a better understanding of the form and its dimensions. It was constructed using adhesives, which would not be used in the final product.

The side "wings" and sail served to diffuse / dampen the light inside as well as to be aesthetically pleasing.

 

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Rounds Two, Three, Four...

The side "wings" were initially intended to intersect with each other to create an interesting criss-cross pattern of light / shadows. However, constructing this form without adhesives proved to be a real challenge.

 

pieces were too narrow to create deeper notches so they could not completely interlock, adding unnecessary height to the intersection 

 

numerous layered pieces put strain on cardboard, causing it to wear and tear

 

challenging to then align the layered pieces' notches with the notches of the boat's side and bottom panels

 

Thus, I decided to layer the side "wing" panels in a parallel, vertical series rather than trying to have them intersect.

 

Further Refinement

The parallel side wings worked well to diffuse the inside light. Additionally, the form was beautiful and eye-catching, especially when lit up in the darkness, and created interesting shadows.

However, adhesives were still being used to hold together the sails. Also, the middle portion of the light (side panels + spine) was off-centered so that one bottom panel seemed to stick out much more than the other. Thus, I had to think of a way to better secure their positions.

 

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The Solution

Chuan is a flat package lighting unit in the form of an abstracted sailboat.

The final product consists of 34 interlocking pieces made from corrugated e-flute cardboard. The lamp can be hung from above or serve as a stationary desk light and securely holds any small light bulb with a standard E26 base.

 

 

Day

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Night

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