Course leader / marco ginoulhiac, university of porto, portugal
language / English
The main purpose of the Toy Design course is to develop skills of the participants in toy comprehension, conception, design and manufacturing.
The opening lectures will explain the importance and complexity of toy design through the most meaningful toys of the 19th and 20th centuries. The conceptual framework around the definition of childhood and the consumption of toys will be discussed as well. During these classes, Ladislav Sutnar’s toys will have a main relevance because of the significance of the author and their graphic and formal quality.
The practical part of the course will challenge the participants to design a toy through several possible creative processes. Starting with a conceptual idea (toys as a reproduction of a part of society), physical experience (toys as sensorial artifact), shapes or colors (toys as a visual experience), materials, rules or mechanisms (toys as an intellectual experience), ages or customers profiles, participants will develop a toy using different techniques. During this period toy examples will be presented in order to explain each category of designing method.
The designing process will start with representation of the idea through handmade sketches and models. After that, a prototype will be produced in wood, foam, cardboard, or other material, depending on the toy’s features. In this phase manufacturing problems will be discussed concerning market and customers in order to understand how to approach production and selling operations.
Finally, the prototypes will be completed with a packaging design and, where necessary, an instruction manual (two aspects that sometimes are as important as the toy itself).
The course is suitable for participants with at least basic background in artistic techniques and designing skills in order to achieve a comprehensive artifacts representation and a good prototype production.