Industrial Revolution

Question 1) What was the industrial revolution? When did it occur? How did industrialisation lead to the creation of the design profession? How was the industrial manufacturing of making products new and what role did the designer play in creating new products?

The Industrial Revolution, which took place from the 18th to 19th centuries, was a period during which rural societies in Europe and America became industrial and urban. ( 2013-08-22)

Prior to this the manufacture of goods was often done in peoples homes using their hands, or basic machinery- the ‘designer’ also created the product. Industrialisation shifted this, with the introduction of powered special machinery, factories and mass production. Many everyday items, such as furniture were not made as single pieces but larger quantities. (Hauffe, 1998, p.12)

Question 2) Explain what series & mass production means. What other factors over time have contributed to the high turnover and international sales of manufactured products?

Series production and Mass production means the manufacture of goods in large quantities, often using standardized designs and assembly-line techniques. (the Free Dictionary, 2013)

Factors that have contributed to a high turnover in sales include new distribution methods that had not previously been commonly used (this includes catalogs, sale representatives and advertising). Also being also to move products more cost effectively and affordably. (Hauffe, 1998, p.12)

Q3. Explain the meaning of the term “form follows function” and its significance. The supporters of Modernist design and functionalism assumed two things about form follows function. What were they? What do you understand by the meaning of each of these? Explain in your own words.

Form follows function is the idea that the design of a building / object should be based upon its final purpose or its function.

The two assumptions made by supporters of modernist design are

1. That the form of an object had only to suit its function and not include unnecessary details. “Ornament is wasted work effort and therefore wasted wealth” (A. Laas, Decoration and Crime, 1908).

2. The process behind manufacturing products needs to be simple and straightforward involving a metric language, are of a high quality and are long lasting. It is clear that at this point in time the focus of design was the function and that there needed to be an order clearly developed and followed to achieve, a simplification of design with improved usability and fair price. This was filling a need that was apparent at the begging of the industrial revolution.

Question 4) List the Five major focal points of a designer. List them and explain what each one means for marketers, promoters, designers and their practices.

1.Artistic/Aesthetic - The creative / creating side of the work, designs, ideas. Exploring medias and aesthetics of design and how they interplay between eachother (Typography, Photography etc) 2.Technical/Functional – Does the design fulfill its intended use, does it have a practical use for marketing? And everyday life/ 3.Marketing Orientation – Is there a product demand from consumers to make them sellable and profitable for their intended audience.

This also involves looking at what has already been done before and specializing their product to fill a gap in the market or a niche. 4.Theoretical/Scientific – Analysing the environment in which the product will be placed and making sure the technicals of the product meet requirement. Also is the product cost efficient to make with budgeting? 5.Organizational/Administrative – How the production of this design met standards and policies. Are they of a high standard?

Question 5) “In design, one can speak of three basic functions of an object” 1.Its practical function 2. Its aesthetic function 3. Its symbolic function 5a) Give the meaning and difference between the practical, aesthetic and symbolic function of each of the functions of an object

The practical function of an object is based upon its whether it has fulfilled its intended use and improved usability.

Aesthetic function of an object or design is if it is pleasing to the eye based upon its visual appearance.

Symbolic function is the characteristic of an object that evokes meaning, status or personality.

5b) Find and image of each of the following designs. Look closely at each object and explain which of the 3 functions is most clearly expressed in each one. Using 50 words for each example, explain how this function is demonstrated by different design elements.

Milton Glaser – ‘We Are All African’ (2008)

Glasers’ ‘We are All African” poster has a very powerful symbolic function. The piece of work has a very apparent message trying to be communicated to the reader, that being of equality. By using different colorings on every finger he makes it highly relatable and it makes the message resonate with the reader.

Guo Pei- Red Shoes: Homeage to Wizard ofOz Shoes, (2011)

Guo Pei’s red shoe is of aesthetic function, the shoes are highly impractical but shows off the craftsmanship of Pei. The detailing of the beadwork is very impressive and strong. The purpose and function of the shoe is not to be worn, but to be admired by the eye.

Dieter Rams – SK4 Record Player, (1956) ‘Snow Whites Coffin’

This design is for practical function and use. It has been well thought out and considered, with simple easy to operate functions. Also the location of the speakers has been considered for optimal sound clarity and sound. The fact also that the design is of very basic colours and materials illustrates its intended practical use.

5c) Research the designer of each of the design examples and write 50 words about them and their contribution to their design discipline

Milton Glaser is one of Americans most celebrated graphic designers, responsible for the iconic I ♥ NY campaign, founded New York magazine and Milton Glaser Inc. He brings a depth of understanding and conceptual thinking, combined with a diverse richness of visual language, to his highly inventive and individualistic work.

Guo Pei is a well know Chinese fashion designer, she works with modern interpretations of fantastical ideas based on history. Using this unique inspirational has set her apart and made her a pioneer in her field. She is one of the first professional fashion designers of China. Her unique style has set her apart and contributed to making her a powerful figure in her industry.

Dieter Rams industrial design pioneer worked with the notion of ‘less but better’. Designing for Braun for over 4 decades, he was responsible for the design of many everyday items in our homes we use today. He reduced the amount of dials, buttons and switches to a minimum and arranged them logically.

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Area of Design (2007). We are all African. Retrieved from

China Design. (2008). Guo Peo: A fashion designer that knows what Chinese design is. Retrieved from

Curtis, H. (1999). Design is History: Milton Glaser. Retrieved from

Milton, Glaser, Inc (n.d). In Brief, Milton Glaser. Retrieved from Hauffe, T. (1998). Introduction to Design: A Concise History, London: Lawrence King, pp. 8-19.

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Photobucket. (2009). Red Shoe Homage Wizard of Oz Shoes. Retrieved from