“Objectified” Response

In Gary Hustwit’s documentary titled “Objectified”, Gary shows us how much work truly goes into the simplest of designs. At the beginning of the documentary we are introduced to various designers and engineers who have revolutionized the way products are built today. One of these people was Johnathan Ive, an industrial designer for Apple. Within a short amount of time, Johnathan explains how much work goes into just one piece of the puzzle that composes a product. Not only that, but he also makes you realize that if it were not for even the most basic of features or design decisions, it could render the rest of the product useless. The documentary goes on to introduce you to various designers as they explain the history of product design, where it is currently at, and what the future may hold. Towards the end of the video, things take a slightly more negative turn. We see the amount of destruction that even the smallest of all objects can cause if not given enough though; an example being a small toothbrush. All in all, this documentary is a great introduction into the world of design and really gets you thinking about how even the smallest aspects of somethings design can have a huge impact on the entire world. Through design, not only are we able to create a whole new product for the general public to get hooked on and use in their everyday lives, but we are also able to communicate ideas to others through the various elements that are incorporated in the design; an example being the colorful presence of a Dyson vacuum cleaner product. Not only are they built to look as high-end as they are, but with very simple color choices and placement, they are able to give off a more “functional” feel to their users, as stated by one of the designers interviewed in the documentary.

What really got my attention was some of the statements made by some of the designers about various products. Probably one of the biggest points brought up was when a designer was discussing the various “faces” that are assigned to various cars. When we see cars in advertisements, we are usually shown the front of the vehicle; sometimes at an angle so we can see the sleek design of the side and rest of the body. But as the designer goes on to discuss is the fact that these vehicles also have “faces” on the back. At that moment it suddenly clicked with me that the vast majority of people never really talk about the backs of their vehicles, only how nice the front and sides look. But what most people fail to realize is that the way the back looks on a vehicle is a result of testing, prototyping and mass production as well, and isn’t appreciated or at least noticed as much as the rest of the vehicle. One other thing that jumped out at me was the discussion of sustainability when it comes to mass produced goods. In an average time span of about 11 months, a high-tech item is thrown in the trash and sent off into a landfill somewhere. What I don’t get (as well as most designers) is why with all the technology and resources we have available today is as to why we don’t construct things in more reliable, easier to recycle materials? By doing so we would be able to recycle more materials to mass produce goods as well as keep from having objects that were rarely used left somewhere to crumble and slowly deteriorate on the Earth. If major mass production companies more willing to use more bio friendly materials, we would not have to worry about this issue. But even with all the research and publicity on this matter, they still choose to use materials such as heavy plastics and steel; things that will not degrade for a very long time.

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