3D Project 1: Pandora’s Box – Further Sketch Models + Final Submission

Here we are again with the boxes and the sketch models. I already did the “Kee Yong doesn’t like Foundation 3D” joke in my previous post, so let’s skip right to the meat.

2D Analysis

It turns out we have to do some drawings analyzing our three-dimensional sketch models — measuring the proportions, pointing out the principal axes, and so on. Here are the sketch models for my two previous models, “Diver” and “Stack.”


Here you can see I tried to stay within the guideline of having all the principal axes of the boxes at right angles — even with “Stack.” The boxes are haphazardly arranged, but when you break it down, they’re still fairly stable in relation to the base.

Then Cheryl gave me the go-ahead to have a diagonal angle, and everything changed.

Sketch Model 3: “ZING”

2D Analysis

My third and final model is essentially a variation on “Stack” but with the subdominant and subordinate boxes at an angle from the dominant. This means the upper half of the model is no longer stable.  It’s sort of falling, suspended only by a precarious support. All in all, it screams ZING much better than my first two attempts.

You’ll notice that unlike the first two sketch models, this one is done up in fancy colors. This is because Cheryl wanted us to use a different material for our final submission. I opted to stick with the foam blocks in the 3D workshop, but add bright acrylic paint and crazy lines to break up the form of the boxes. Using foam blocks also meant that I could easily cut and refine them to the volumes I wanted, instead of falling back on prefabricated objects. (Unfortunately, it transpires that I am not very good at painting — please disregard the extremely messy white coating and the obviously ragged lines.)

There are various subtleties within the form of this piece, mostly unintentional. Each of the blocks is 1/3 of the volume of the next block, which nicely ties in to that “Rule of Thirds” thing Cheryl keeps harping on about. The angles of the model form a zig-zag shape, just like a Z for ZING. And I tried to construct the model in such a way that it defies right angles and symmetry, no matter what angle you observe it from.


As required by the project brief, here are various real-world uses that this 3D model could have. I’ve taken this as an opportunity to practice my highly suspect drawing skills.




I presented the final model to Cheryl and she was pleasantly surprised by the colors. (I guess my painting skills aren’t that bad.) She did, however, feel that some of the boxes appeared too similar from certain dimensions; that it looks like they were all cut from the same foam sheet, given how samey their proportions are. (I can neither confirm nor deny this supposition.)

In all, I feel like the final product wasn’t too bad, given the agony and mental gymnastics I went through to produce it. The objective of the exercise was, after all, to provoke exploration. This project has definitely been a ride with no brakes into the unknown.

Still… I don’t think I’ll be majoring in product design any time soon.


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Chin Kee Yong

hello i play video games and also sometimes make video games

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