The goal of this project was to create an interactive object that emits gentle light. My focus was on creating a form that communicated the potential for an engaging interaction and optimized the quality of the light for nighttime.
I worked on creating forms that had clear activated and deactivated states. I explored the challenges of doing so for both forms that were meant to be held and forms that remained on a surface. I found that of the sketch models, the final one was the most successful aesthetically and had the potential for an exciting interaction.
As the spherical model was radially symmetrical, I chose to employ a rotating motion to activate the light—a half turn in either direction would turn it on or off. I found that the grid changing in elevation created a gradient diffusion of the light. Needing the light to shine through the whole grid evenly, I made it dome shaped to surround the translucent light bulb that I fashioned for the LED. These rested on a base that contained the batteries, wiring, and the tilt switch mechanism that activates the light.
After testing this model out with my peers, I found that they were drawn to the form of the dome, and interacted with it as I had intended. So, I focused on refining the other forms that made up the lighting engine: the bulb and the base. I made both of these into short truncated cones—this allowed the bulb to fit better inside the dome and made the base much less bulky, unifying the piece.
The final piece diffuses the glow in an engaging pattern that complements the light's gentle quality. I see this product being used as a bedside lamp or night light, though it could have a variety of uses.