I caught up with Asha Ahmed, one of three young people to graduate the Get Started with Product Design course and go on to earn a work placement with some of our members. Hear about her experience here:
Hey Asha, so how did you find out about Makerversity?
I found out about Makerversity on the taster day for the Prince’s Trust Product Design program, which was for people who have been out of work and for those who just were looking for a possible career change in the world of design. The space was very fitting and motivating. I felt that it was a refreshing place to be, having to work a long side people who are already established in their craft. The whole ambiance of the space helped me get back my passion for drawing, designing again and bringing my ideas to life.
Tell us about your time on the course?
On the first day, the class were given a breakdown on what, when and how we were going to achieve a final product. The aim was to create a product that could be used by members at Makerversity, to minimise clutter and ensure maximum usefulness of the space. I immediately thought of something small and basic because I knew that I only had a week to finish it by. I came up with the idea of a dismantled pen pot, that could be taken apart and put back together using a clever concept of a jigsaw design to help lock all the pieces together, creating a well-structured pentagon-shaped pen pot with a removable pentagon base.
The whole ambiance of the space helped me get back my passion for drawing, designing again and bringing my ideas to life.
I learnt a fair bit on the week program, such as how best to create a 3D product and the processes of designing a 2D/3D drawing to help design your product using digital design software, for example, Adobe Illustrator and Fusion 360 etc.
What made you want to stay on for a work experience placement?
After that week to reflect and be able to express my thoughts and ideas on paper, as well as being able to accomplish a final product in only a week made me feel that I could do so much more if I made it a career. The week-long product program made me hungry to learn more and that’s why I went on to the work experience placement.
During your work placement who did you work with? What drew you to that company?
I worked with Dejan Mitrovic and Sandra Djukic of Kidesign. Kidesign is an educational start-up specialising in designing creative curriculum materials for CAD and 3D printing projects to encourage student engagement in design and STEM subjects.
The thing that interested me about Kidesign is that they are an educational company and their purpose is to encourage the young generation to get involved with learning design and technology as a creative tool; to help connect the digital world by teaching practical 21st century skills; and to help stimulate young minds, which could later result in a career in design, technology and engineering.
What was the aspect that you most enjoyed about your work there? What was the most challenging?
The challenging part for me was my lack of knowledge when faced with using digital technology and how out of sync I felt with its methods. However, I found the process in learning how to use it very enjoyable.
Working with Kidesign helped me understand the amount of hard work, research, time, patience and dedication that goes into creating your own brand. It enabled me to widen my creative capacity and formulate steps on what I want to do in the future, regarding the world of design and technology. As well as, being able to understand the concept of an idea and how it is formed into a tangible product, which has given me a needed insight to creating my very own start up business.
If you could offer advice to anyone wanting to get started in creative work, what would you say?
Go for it. Do not second guess yourself or overthink on whether you have a creative bone in your body. Take the leap because you never know what you are capable of, and the chances are that you like what you have learnt and want to pursue a career in design.