Humble Reliability

This was an exercise in discovering the inextricable relationship between physical forms and its intangible emotions through a targeted product - the hair dryer.

Quick study models from found objects around us were used as a basis for form exploration, with further explorations with foam models. We eventually developed three prototypes to convey and express the emotion of "humble reliability" through their forms.

Audrey Chua, Johanan Lau

︎︎︎ Initial research on existing hair dryers in the market revealed that most of them tended to look powerful and daunting, or feel amicable and approachable.

︎︎︎ Given their supplementary role in our daily lives, we felt it could best be expressed in a dependable yet effacing way. We broke it down into several key traits that we felt best characterized the feeling we wanted it to emulate.

︎︎︎ Quick study models were assembled to better understand the physical attributes of the core emotion.

By materialising the study models, we were able to comprehend 3-dimensionally the physical attributes that would be expressive of the emotion.

︎︎︎ A total of 30 foam models were made for form exploration, while also keeping in mind the positions of the eventual buttons and vents.

We discovered three form directions which were most favoured, namely:

Guiding — Modest silhouette with long contours
Maternal — Bulbous and compact
Honest — Simple form with smooth transitions and a sturdy grip

︎︎︎ Guiding:

The side profile is reminiscent of a modest bending posture and is attentively angled to retain its poise.

The balance in proportion is carefully played out to maximise its vertical stability without compromising on the long contour lines of the hair dryer.

︎︎︎ Maternal:

The distinct identity of this hair dryer lies in its bulbous proportion and its compact shape which perfectly conforms to the palm.

It has a relatively small and inconspicuous form, yet provides a firm grip.

︎︎︎ Honest:

The humility of the form is expressed through its basic shape complementing the general uniformity in volume throughout the body.

The slightly protruding contour at the front emanates just a touch of sturdiness when grasped.