After the research phase which looks at feasibility, upcoming trends and industry insights we move on to concept creation.
1. Project discussion & problem solving
Concept creation usually starts with a project discussion between a team of 2-3 designers who explore the challenges and opportunities of the product together. This includes hand sketching and working to overcome problems.
Once a few directions have been outlined, the individual designers work on developing the ideas in sketch form, constantly evaluating them against the brief. Further problem solving is needed at this stage. The functionality and look of the product is developed with materials and processes considered.
The team then review all the designs and ideas to decide on 2 to 3 to take forward to present to the client. This may include a larger team review to get a new perspective.
3. Block CAD model
Most projects are then worked up into a CAD 3D model in Solidworks which considers materials and manufacturability but is not fully engineered. Another option which suits some projects is a 2D photoshop illustration.
4. Presentation images
Concept models are then rendered using Keyshot to produce photorealistic images for presentation. The manufacturing is always accounted for so we know all concepts can be made if they are taken forwards to the next stage.
5. Concept finalisation
After the concepts have been presented, the final design is decided upon. This may simply be one of the presented concepts, or a modification, or it may be a mixture of features from different concepts. Once this stage is complete it will become the basis of the production model and is ready for the next phase; Detailed Design and Engineering.