Featured Designer : David Tsai
David Tsai is an adjunct professor at Houston Community College and an award winning industrial designer who loves 3D printing.
How did you get involved with 3D printing?
My first involvement with 3d printing was in having a case design prototyped for a freelance design client. After that, I was excited to explore my own ideas and the opportunities that 3d printing provides..
What kind of things do you design?
I design objects that people interact with, functional objects ranging from furniture to pull up bars to iphone cases.
What makes your work different?
In my work the aesthetic is guided by idea and function. I aim for a balance of function and aesthetic, but function is definitely the main driver dictating how my designs will look. I love minimal, structural, efficient, quirky…and of course beautiful, forms, but the key factor is that the form has to do something, it has to work.
How do you think 3D printing has changed and will change?
3d printing has made a huge jump this year into the broad public’s consciousness, everyone now knows of or at least heard of 3d printing. I think it will change in improved fidelity, wider range of materials, larger scale capability and increased availability to broader public.
What types of materials do you like to use?
I like the glossy metals.
What has been your favorite object to make?
I think I need to do more before declaring my favorite, too early to tell.
Why do you think 3D printing is effective in design?
You can explore ideas quickly, and create form that is difficult or impossible to do with traditional manufacturing processes.
Which 3D printer machine do you like to use?
The ones they have at Shapeways. Unfortunately, I do not yet have my own.
What would you say to the aspiring 3D designer?
Start with something small and easy and also learn to also build things with your hands. Get a good understanding of the physical world and physical objects. The real world and real materials behave very differently than the perfect world of 3d on your computer screen.
What would you like to design this year?
A beautiful useful object that a lot of people can benefit from.