What do car designers, architects and industrial designers all have in common? They are quick to give their ideas physicality by building PROTOTYPES.
The idea of building models based on your concepts is as old as ancient Greece. In fact, the word prototype comes from the Greek, prototypon, to create impression or develop a primitive form. At Creative Ventures we are quick to go to prototype and have discovered it gives us something to work from, something solid and real. Getting a prototype done quickly moves the idea from the theoretical to the tangible. The prototype becomes critical with the more people involved. Try discussing your idea with a group of people and you will rapidly find yourself in the old game of “telephone” where everyone hears the idea differently, but give them a prototype and everyone will be working from the same place.
Most of our prototypes take the form of storyboard sketches where we are able to visualize our ideas. We post the storyboards all over the walls of our offices and begin to see what the project will look like. Since most of the readers of this journal entry are probably not designing sport cars or blenders, your prototypes may well be sketches. The sketches don’t have to be pretty. Michael Lungren of HKS Architects (and my sketching instructor) talks about the “scratchy start”. He means just get something on paper to get going. Starting is an important part of prototypes.
A prototype is best served when the model meets the desired outcome. Car designers use clay models to prototype their designs.
At Creative Ventures we are getting ready to launch a new media platform with video series based on our strategic platforms. Here our prototyping took the form of BETA testing. We shot half a dozen videos and got them ready for post-production work just to test the idea.
Form follows function so find the right style of prototyping to make your ideas come to life and to help them find the traction that will bring them to reality!