SWITCH: Senior Thesis Process Blog

Initial Project Proposal

Idea—Tell us about your project. What is your project about? What is your big idea? What will you do, make, or make an argument for? What do you want to do? (250 words)

My project has to do with the creation of skis from the initial manufacturing to the design and packaging. Global warming has had a tremendous impact on the sport of skiing and winter sports in general- the lack of snow, melting glaciers and decreased snowfall are continuing to impact the ability to ski, and the future isn’t looking bright. Many people have rallied behind climate change, such as POW (Protect our Winters), Patagonia, etc., and through this project I want to continue to focus on this issue.

I saw a video about a guy that made skateboard decks using recycled, melted, plastic bags. I want to research this method, as well as other recycling or environmentally friendly methods of manufacturing, to see if it would be possible to make a similar prototype for skis.

From here, I would like to apply graphic design to focusing on designing multiple graphics for the skis, packaging, as well as a brand identity that highlights the correlation between climate change and the design.

Intent—What kind of impact- aesthetic, intellectual, communal, civic and/or social- do you hope your project will have? Why is the project worth doing? What does your project bring to the world and why does it matter? What is the significance and value of your project- to you and the wider context? What will you expand, improve, deliver, provide, instill, empower, achieve? (100)

I hope to have both a aesthetic and environmental impact with my project. I think it both could be a really interesting exploration into ways that we could make skis with a more environmental focus, as well as a really interesting learning experience for myself. It would force me to expand my knowledge on the topic of skiing learning how to create skis, and it would push me creatively to come up with the design aspects after creating the physical piece. I think it could be a step in a new direction for manufacturing and could also bring more awareness to environmental issues. 

Execution—What final form(s) might your project take? What will you accomplish? How are you planning to realize this idea? How many weeks or months will it take to realize? What outcome will result from your actions? (100)

The final form of the project will be a pair of manufactured skis, as well as the successes and failures, designs for ski graphics, a visual identity for the product, and packaging. I will come to this initially through research and understanding the possibilities in physically creating skis. This will be a large portion of my research and first semester. A few weeks will then be dedicated to creating the physical piece. The design will then take place in the latter half of the year, which will be broken down between packaging, visual identity, and graphics.

Context—Place your work in context so that we may better evaluate it. What is your topic or area of interest? What are you exploring or investigating? What have you seen/read/heard/experienced that informs your understanding of this topic? Who else is working (or has worked) in this area? What are some keywords or tags that are linked to this topic (100)

I grew up skiing and always felt that the designs on skis never compared to those of snowboards. As we got older I saw the designs on skis improve, and found myself drawn to certain designs. I saw them as pieces of art as well as skis.

Experience—What in your past experience has prepared you for this project and how might your project act as a catalyst for your creative and professional growth? What knowledge and experience do you bring to the project? (50)

Aspiration—How does your project prepare you for creative practice after you leave Stamps and the university? (50).

Sydney ShafferComment