The Importance of Developing Prototypes

February 3, 2012

Photo from

As a product development firm, our goal is to create products and/or services that can ultimately be manufactured with ease. Our design team is skilled in all aspects of Design for Manufacturing (DFM) and we offer extensive prototyping services for our clients—from form study sketch models and visual appearance models to fully functional prototypes. It is imperative to create prototypes to test and validate human factors, ergonomics, mechanical features and aesthetics. While photorealistic renderings are important to see what the final design will look like, they don’t give us the feedback that we need in terms of comfort, aesthetics, and visual appeal. This is something that only prototypes can help us to better understand.

The video below is from Studio 7.5, a design firm based in Germany, and speaks about their design of the Herman Miller Setu chair and its development. The video shows breadboard models and a large number of fully-functional prototypes that were developed before presenting their final concept to Herman Miller. They speak about the importance of materials and why certain ones were chosen for this design. As discussed in this video, the environmental aspect of design has become inherent and is no longer a discussion that is held with the client. The final design of the Setu chair is 93% recyclable. As designers, it is imperative that we always keep sustainability in mind. Check out the video below for a more detailed look at their process.

Submitted By: Trevis Kurz, Industrial Designer

Up Down