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When I think about where I want to be in a couple of years, I want to be an Industrial Designer in the automotive sector. Automotive design is my passion, and that is where I want to design in the future. When I see designs in this sector nowadays, every car virtually looks the same. Seat, Audi and Volkwagen are based on the same formula, and so are Lancia and Chrysler. This is a shame in my opinion, as I think exterior and interior design is what distinguishes a car. If there is no difference, there is only little to distinguish. What you design for, needs to have a distinctive identity. Some car manufacturers are succeeding well in creating their own identity. For example the latest DS-series of Citroën, or Alfa Romeo with its 4C, Giulietta and MiTo.

I tried to implement this in my projects. The designs' shape and the interaction are distictive, do not have too many frills and are mostly not shaped too rationally. I like to keep hold of this in my future designs, as well as for my future in design. I like to become a car designer or a concept designer.

Some car models I like, due to their distinctive identity. Alfa Romeo 4C, Spyker C8, Citroën DS5.
A previous project. I made a recording device with a distinctive shape and interaction.


My identity is spread over multiple fields of interest. First of all, I have a fascination for automotive design. Besides that, I have a small webdesign business which is a hobby that turned into a student job. And finally, I also practice some hobbies, such as volleyball, drumming, sketching cars and painting.

When I have spare time, I am busy with these occupations. I also follow the trends of automotive design and web design. Since the start of this semester I have been involved in the development of four websites in total, of one I am the webmaster. Furthermore, I have been participating in some design competitions, to challenge my design skills as well as to learn from the other participants. My strengths lie in designing concepts and designing graphically. That is where I want to go to.

There are two major fields of interest for me: automotive design and web-/interaction design.

PDP - B2.2

Last semester, I implemented more user focus into the project. To hold on to this learning experience, I wanted to once again include user focus in the project and possibly improve on my activities in this field. Besides that, I had the assignment "Mathematics of sound". Having established some level of awareness for Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling here, I wanted to apply it some more in the project. Some PDP goals were made in preparation for an internship, and thus included practical goals. I got to know a 3D modeling program, Autodesk Alias. Furthermore, I incorporated making descriptive models into my design process. I practiced my sketching skills and worked on my personal attitude. I especially improved on a personal issue, as I am a busy student who has to divide his work efficiently. I noticed that I am better at saying "No" to people, or at least telling them to wait until I have time to help them.

Past Development & Activities

Overall Development
Self-directed and Continuous Learning
Ideas and Concepts
Form and Senses
Integrating Technology
User Focus and Perspective
Socio-cultural Awareness
Designing Business Processes
Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling
Teamwork and Communication
Design and Research Processes
= Previous development. = Current development.

Innovate Dementia

The project "Innovate Dementia" was about enabling the dementing people to live at home longer before having to go into a care institution. The goal of the team was to assist these elderly people in daily activities, so they put less stress on their family or caregiver. The competency areas I covered the most in this project, are User Focus and Perspective, Socio-cultural Awareness and Teamwork and Communication. I conducted the user tests, was team leader of the project team and since this was a project with an unfamiliar target group, I had to place myself in the perspective of the people suffering from dementia.

A compilation sketch of the concept. Daylight would be integrated in several objects.
The setup after the user test. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take picture during the test.

Designing Visual Information

For "Designing Visual Information", I iterated actively on designing graphic media. I learned to lay out information in a better way but also to efficiently direct the user's attention. Besides, during the session I learned to look critical to my own and others' work.

There was a weekly presentation of homework, where I improved my pitching skills. It was mostly related to User Focus and Perspective, Form and Senses and Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling. I learned how people look at your information, how to display the information well in a good-looking composition, and to communicate what I want to tell with my information.

Through the course of the assignment, we learned about composition, storytelling, corporate identities and portfolios.
Due to the practical setup of this assignment, we learned to bind books, and got more experience in printing graphic design.

Mathematics of Sound

This assignment was about analyzing sound in a mathematical way. The amount of math in the assignment as well as the interpretation of the mathematical problems we were given as homework contributed in a different way of thinking. I noticed that I still use this thinking when coding for prototypes or for server-side webdesign. This assignment mostly served the competency area Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling.

Notebook-like computer assignments were made during this assignments, with interactive elements onto them.

Risk Society

Academic Development means that we need to choose one of three obligatory courses that would help us develop at academic level, and I chose Risk Society. What is their perception on risks that could influence the product your designing? I wrote an essay on why paternalism (exclusively letting authorities or scientists make political decisions under risk) is an inadequate political theory of risk.

Present Development & Activities

Overall Development
Self-directed and Continuous Learning
Ideas and Concepts
Form and Senses
Integrating Technology
User Focus and Perspective
Socio-cultural Awareness
Designing Business Processes
Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling
Teamwork and Communication
Design and Research Processes
= Previous development. = Current development.

Play your way into the hospital

This project was aimed at children who need to visit a children's hospital. The client is "Prinses Máxima Centrum voor Kinderoncologie". With my concept, I aimed more at children who stay longer at a hospital, as they have several places to go to. Besides, the concept could enhance their experience during their stay. The "Hospital Whisperer" is a way finding quest which not only helps the children in finding their way, but also establishes more of a village feeling in the hospital to enhance the experience as well as to keep the children motivated.

My design process during this project was aimed at individual work, so I did much work on my own. This made me develop several competency areas.

  • It applied to Self-directed and Continuous Learning, as I worked on a project on my own. Reflecting was ever more important, and I had to look more critical to my learning experiences as well as my learning goals and goals for the project.
  • Ideas and Concepts was also part of this project, as I developed new ideas or iterated on an idea by brainstorming. The concept reshaped iteratively. I also found that exploring the context helps for me when I need inspiration.
  • Form and Senses was integrated into the project from the start. My concept has different objects that needed careful consideration of the definite shape. I found that the interaction could be determined by the shape, and possibly even be improved.
  • Integrating Technology was more than ever a part of my project. I faced some challenges and learned about Arduino and Processing. I had an idea of how it should work, which took some effort to convert into a working prototype. For the first time I made a working prototype before the deadline, maybe due to my coding experience and clearer plans than last semesters.
  • User Focus and Perspective was integrated at the start and at the end of the project. This part is equal to last semester, where I also did an user exploration at the start, and a user test to validate the concept. I did improve on usertesting, where I was more determined on what I wanted to find out.
  • Socio-cultural Awareness was part of the attitude towards the user. I tried to place myself in the child's perspective during the various activities I did for the project. I think this is similar to last semester, but I was able to explore the context earlier and gain more insight.
  • Activities concerning Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling were making descriptive models as well as prototyping. I had a goal for making a prototype, which I had to analyze and translate into an actual prototype. Some of the (complex) ideas of the concept needed to be presented or to be visualized. I was aware over this competency area, but I did not cover it like I did last semester.
  • Concerning Teamwork and Communication, the focus laid more on communication. I contacted hospitals and improved on my pitching skills. Giving the right information and asking the right questions is important here. But also starting early with communication, without hesitation. What I experienced once more, is that team members and outsiders of the project can give meaningful insights on the project. This is also related to the next competency area.
  • Design and Research Processes as well. I iterated more during the process, with a more elaborate concept as result. I have set more concrete goals, and I had a better overview of what I needed to do on short term.

When I look at the process view, Envisioning Transforming Society applies to my vision on the project. I wanted to make a child explore more, and make its life at the hospital more convenient. This changes the child's attitude towards staying at the hospital.

Exploring and Validating in context applies to the user testing and user exploration I have done. This is related to Envisioning Transforming Society, as I wanted to transform the hospital's society, but I needed to find out how to get to the children. What would interest them?

Thinking: analyzing and abstracting applies to the interpretation of the exploration and to the reflecting during iterations. When I observed the children, I generated ideas on how to use their current activities in what I design. Throughout iterations of making, I abstracted the current situation and compared it to my goals. So this is related to the abovementioned drives, as well as to Making: synthesizing and concretizing.This last strategy applied to the actual iterations, so when I developed ideas, descriptive models or built prototypes.

An illustrative scene. A young boy listens to Nurse Ostrich, and hears a hint about going to Major Turtle, around the corner.
The functioning prototype. It is a mockup of the final model, combined with Arduino and Processing.
The stethoscope that would be handed out to the children when they are staying at the hospital.
A closeup of the interaction between a person and the figure.

Creative Programming

Creative Programming is an assignment about learning how to create interactive, intelligent objects by means of programming. Arduino and Processing were covered in this assignment. In the lessons, I learned how to work with these environments. I also learned about how to make interactive objects by combining both of them. I had quite some programming experience before, but not with actually implementing it in projects. This assignment helped to such an extent that I now can code for prototypes with relative ease. This assignment applies for the following competency areas:

  • First of all, Integrating Technology, as it enables me to actually integrate intelligent behavior in my projects. This is a big step forward, as before this assignment I could not use my "full potential", and neither get the most out of this competency area.
  • As I used this assignment in favor of my project, by developing a prototype that was related to what I wanted to make for the project, this is also related to how I plan my design process, or Design and Research Processes.
The videowalkthrough of the game.
A prototype I built based on my project goals. It was related to the final deliverable, but abstracted to just recognize the RFID tag and light up the right LED (red tag = red LED, yellow tag is yellow LED, blue tag = green LED).

Exploratory Sketching

For this assignment, the goal was to improve on exploratory and communicative sketching. Through the course of the assignment, I improved on these qualities, as well as my sketching techniques. The feedback I got from the assignor, was that I improved greatly on the (exploratory and overall) sketching skills, reaching an "almost professional level". Furthermore, he states that I am able to communicate effectively. Advice I got was that I should look into digital sketching (for automotive sketching, this is used increasingly), as well as try to express more with colored markers. This will make my sketches look more professional and would bring them to life. This assignment is related to the following competency areas.

  • Ideas and Concepts, as I experimented with visual brainstorming and communicating my ideas through sketches. This worked well, and improved through the course of the assignment.
  • User Focus and Perspective, for that I developed a better understanding for how to effectively communicate a scene or the essence of a sketch in such a way it is understandable for audiences.
  • It also is related to Form and Senses, as I got a better feeling for using different sketching materials, as well as how to express materials and depth on paper.
  • Also to Teamwork and Communication, as I improved my communicative sketching techniques.
  • Design and Research Processes, as I experimented with a new way of exploring. Where I did only limited exploration before, I now deliver a more quantitative shape study.
  • Self-Directed and Continuous Learning, as I learned to look critical at my own work and learned how to improve it. It is another level of abstracting, where I reflect on my own work.

Concerning the process view, Making: synthesizing and concretizing is most relevant here. Because this is about applying certain techniques for exploring and communicating.

Through the course of the assignment, we were encouraged to do motor skill training.
During the assignment, I learned about how to draw figures and faces.
Next to that, I learned about how to draw scenes, and how I could attract attention to the right spot.
Furthermore, I learned about sketching objects. First of all from a photo, and only basic shapes...
...to more advanced shapes and from my imagination, through an exploratory process.

STRP: The New Machine Era

During the STRP festival at Strijp-S, there was an exhibition called "The New Machine Era", for which Industrial Design formed a team. This project was about making a big Goldberg Machine, for which 6 teams would design and build an addition. I participated in the Industrial Design team, which was a great experience. It took some planning, because it at that time the project and the assignments started as well. I gained experience in working in a big team. The project was one of trial and error, there constantly had to be developed new solutions to make complex and illogical structures work. It helped me with the following competency areas:

  • Ideas and Concepts, as the development of the machine was full of iterations that required rethinking entire parts of the machine.
  • Form and Senses, as the machine should be part of an exhibition. It had to have a certain identity and style. Besides, the movements of the machine had to be big, understandable and theatrical.
  • Teamwork and Communication is also related to this activity. I worked in a team of more than 10 people, where the development of the machine had to be coordinated very precisely.

On the process view, it is related to Making: synthesizing and concretizing, as the machine had to be built after all. During the process, there were moments of reflections and problems that had to be solved. This required Thinking: Abstracting and Analyzing. A Goldberg machine should run smoothly, so it was tested repeatedly. This is related to Exploring: Validating into Context.

A video that explains the project.
Our part of the machine was built at a different location, before we moved it to the Klokgebouw.
A detail of our machine at Klokgebouw, among the other machines.
A photo of the team at the machine after the first run, which did not go without mistakes. That meant we had to adjust the machine at a couple of places.

Freelance webdesign + feature design

Next to my studies, I have my own webdesign business. Regionally, I have been making websites for a number of companies and clubs. For my last projects, I have been designing more in a multi-disciplinary way. The customer relationship extended, as I was asked to design another website for my last client, Görtz Fruit B.V., and they wanted me to design parts of their corporate identity as well. Think of business cards and product labeling. As I did not have experience with these requests yet, I had to rethink my way of doing business, thinking through these new situations as well.

And because of the success, I was thinking to start up a small webdesign company together with my brother. This still requires some thinking, as we need to establish our unique selling points. For now, I have been designing websites that are relatively cheap and tailor-made for the client's requirements. I have also been thinking to develop my hand-made Content Management System (CMS) into a commercial product. Launching it into the wide world would need some consideration, but I am developing a formula which expresses the unique selling points.

So far, these are the competencies that are related to my webdesign activities.

  • Ideas and Concepts, as I tailor-make a website to the client's requirements. This requires a whole new concept every time.
  • User Focus and Perspective, as my knowledge on how to make websites that are user-friendly, how to display the information as good as possible and how to also take the visitor's needs into account expands.
  • Designing Business Processes, as I look for opportunities to expand my business, but also look on how I can communicate my business the best.
  • Socio-cultural Awareness, as I take the changing society into account. Mobile webdesign is getting more important, so I also design a mobile website for my future projects.
  • Teamwork and Communication, as I need to have a professional attitude when it comes to communication with clients.
  • Form and Senses is also related to this business, as I need to establish a graphic design that meets the requirements and makes sense in the way that I apply my knowledge with respect to User Focus and Perspective, as well as Socio-cultural Awareness.
  • Finally, Design and Research Processes comes to play here as well, as I work on webdesign projects in a design process that is related to how I would do it during my studies.

When I look at the process view here, Making: Synthesizing and Concretizing is related because I design websites and make these work. Exploring: Validating in context is related as I incorporate a client's input, as I want to deliver tailor-made websites.

Two of my latest websites, where I made the website responsive for both desktop and mobile displays. These websites are flexible in a way that they always fit, changing setup when going to mobile or desktop view. The website from Görtz Fruit can be reviewed at www.gortzfruit.nl
The first iteration on my business model. During the workshop "Business Model You" I iterated on it. In the summer holiday, when I am going to start a company with my brother, we will iterate on it as well.
During the development of my own CMS, I had to think through far more interactions than with the websites I design.

Autovisie Design Competition

Autovisie Design Competition was a design competition to design the car of 2025. It had to be a cheap car, suitable for 4 people, environmental-friendly, and should be fun to drive. My concept, the 4Roam, is a compact car with inspiration from the original Fiat Panda. It is a small but spacious car, without too many frills and due to its simplicity fun to drive. I had to make a visual presentation as well as a video pitch to enter the competition. I did not end up in the top 10, but there was an option for getting feedback from the (professional) jury of the competition. I haven't got a response yet. Some competency areas that have been related so far, are:

  • Ideas and Concepts, as I developed an idea for entering a competition, which had some requirements. I had some guidelines but also some limitations when designing.
  • Form and Senses, as the car had to have an appearance, for which I had to express what it should look like on paper.
  • Teamwork and Communication, as I needed to present my concept in a pitch. I had to communicate it as good as possible. Although the video was maybe not the best edited video ever, and the pitch could be improved, I learned about how to present myself in a video this way.

Sketching and creating a presentational video is mostly related to Making: Synthesizing and Concretizing. But beforehand, I had to come up with a vision, which is related to Thinking: Abstracting and Analyzing.

The video pitch of my concept.
For this competition, I needed to develop a concept with a certain goal and certain requirements. In this sketch I display various aspects of my concept.
To display more advanced features, I applied some communicative sketching skills I learned at the assignment "Exploratory Sketching"

Autodesk Alias Automotive learning

One of my PDP goals was to learn the basics of a 3D-modeling program. I chose Autodesk Alias Automotive, as a coach of mine thought that program was used in the automotive industry. I followed some tutorials, and learned the basics. I did not become a 3D-modeling guru, and I plan to improve on my skills. In preparation for my (potential) internship, I will be learning more 3D-modeling in SolidWorks this summer.

This is mostly related to Form and Senses, as I explored another way of visually designing objects. To some extent, this is also related to Descriptive and Mathematical Modeling, as I got more insight into complex 3D models, and how to visualize them. On the process view, this is about learning more techniques for Making: Synthesizing and Concretising.

After following a tutorial, I tried to make a car with the knowledge that I had. This is the result.
A second exploration within Alias. A more complex, shoe-like shape.


Design2Gather is a design competition platform, where the designers are connected to the real world. Your ideas also get feedback from professionals. I created an idea, which I enhanced with respect to the feedback Igot. It was an interesting learning experience, as I got an insight into how the real world looks to my ideas. My idea was the SteppingShoe. These shoes respond to movements children make when playing outside. The shoe generates videogame sound effects and light effects. It is related to the following competency areas:

  • Ideas and Concepts, as I had to develop an idea for a given assignment, with certain requirements that I had to keep in mind. It was a good training for idea generation.
  • Designing Business Processes. The feedback was related to the feasibility as well as the cost structure of the idea. I did research to what the idea would cost, and how it would stick together.
  • The aforementioned feasibility research was also related to Integrating Technology, as I had to find out what technology would make the idea function

This competition was mostly related to Making: synthesizing and concretising , as I developed an idea. But also to Exploring: Validating into Context, as I got feedback from professionals and adapted my idea accordingly.

The first concept visualization. This was the initial visualization uploaded to Design2Gather.
The second concept visualization. This iteration was based on feedback I got on the concept. Where for example the intial concept was a shoe-addon, it turned into a standalone shoe.

Business Model You

I did this workshop to dust off my business modeling knowledge. Business Modeling-wise, I found that making a business model is an iterative process as well. Once again, I got an insight into my potential, and how I could use it, what I should avoid and what I should accentuate and communicate to my clients. This activity is related to Designing Business Processes, as it made me think of my unique selling points, but also about making business models. In addition, it is related to the strategy Thinking: Analyzing and Abstracting, as I abstracted my skills and my position in my studies.

My personal business model, at the end of the workshop. This looks similar to a business model I made earlier, but it suited better to my current business.
A photo report of the workshop. The distribution of these photos is not allowed outside this showcase. Courtesy of: Jim Steenbakkers, Business Model Inc.