Hello I am Adam Leedham, Workshop Manager at Makerversity.
I am here to help people make things and help the workshops run smoothly. I mainly run the organisational side of things, health and safety aspects, machine purchases and guide the direction of the workshops with regards to making processes etc. I ended up at MV by working as a bank manager for 10 years then became a workshop technician working with artists and came to Makerversity around 7 years ago as a workshop technician.
New materials and machines/trends I’d like to see more of; is sustainable making with materials that don’t cause harm to the environment. We do a lot of digital fabrication through 3D printing at Makerversity for prototyping and it’s brilliant for that purpose, but some of the materials are not good for the environment when it comes to disposal. So a lot of my focus is on researching bio/plant based materials that can substitute the harsh chemicals that are used in the prototyping stage without compromising results.
The best thing about running a workshop is the people, what they’re making and learning how to help them. There are so many different making processes happening all the time and it’s great to have to constantly learn techniques and machine processes to be able to support them in whatever they’re doing because whatever they’re doing is always interesting. The worst thing about running a workshop is machines breaking. It’s a constant battle to keep all the different machines we have, maintained and running, although I do enjoy taking things apart and putting them back together; it is never ending.
What I’d like to see more of in the making world is just making. Traditional making techniques like carpentry are just as important now as they have ever been; so as much of that as possible but I’m always excited to see new making techniques coming through Makerversity from new people. Recently we’ve had members exploring the idea of the metaverse and how it could impact society or change education or even at the most simple level, offer digital artefacts that accompany physical products, this excites me simply because of the unrealised potential of a new creative arena.
When it comes to products or projects that have come through the workshops that have excited me, that’s all of them. There isn’t a member at Makerversity who isn’t making something that’s not exciting. Every member is pushing boundaries and has a unique idea. That’s why Makerversity is such an exciting and interesting place to be for staff and member businesses.
Sustainability is a crucial consideration in making and we can help workshop users be more sustainable through guidance from our sustainability policy. I’m currently doing a lot of research into how we can guide our members but it comes down to material choices, as I’ve mentioned above, repurposing machines and materials and choosing the correct technologies that are using renewable energies and sustainable sources. When it comes to how the individual can work sustainably vs institutions/businesses – individuals can choose their own materials sources and types which informs institutional sustainability and institutions can guide individuals into sustainable practices through robust sustainability policies. It has to be done hand in hand, in conjunction with each other, but if you vote with your purchases things change more quickly and that’s what we aim to do.
If you have any questions for the workshop team you can contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org