Picking a Thesis

I am a fourth year ID student, and having difficulty deciding what area to focus my final year of study on. A teacher told me the other day that we should take thesis year as an opportunity to carry out our “dream project” which he assumed we’ve had rolling around in our heads for the past 3 years. I have no dream project. In fact I am not sure if this is even the field for me. I know I need to chose something that is going to interest me for the next 8 months, something I have some knowledge of, and hopefully something that could help me break into my furture career. My passion is in film and television. I am wondering if there are websites that discuss project ideas/ product needs for different areas of the marketplace, or if anyone has any ideas for topic selection. I have done months of research - I have 2 weeks to decide. Please help!!!

…find some local people who have some depth of knowlege and experience with your area of interest (film, theatre, tv, commercial production)…observe them work…ask them questions…pick something of significance which interests you and which you can user research and model in time… i would limit it to something i could hand carry easily (in my pocket if possible).

What about set design? I’m thinking of Team America especially.

Don’t worry too much. Thesis is meant to be difficult for everyone.
It is good that you know what you like and don’t like in your life, but don’t just through away your three+ years of experience with ID. Make it interesting in your own way. Observe films and its industry and compare it to ID field. See if there are any films that are influencial to Industrial Designers and its industry- and visa versa.
I am sure you can find many interesting elements in films or its history how it portrait “products”, “Our economy related to Design history”, or just simply list the things that can be related to ID- for ex., cars in films, furnitures appeared in films, objects of obsession and its relationship to the characters in the films.
Perhaps you can start with interviewing some film directors, students, storyboard artists, set designers, prob artists and prototype firms that are interactive with our industry.
Good luck… Above was just some of simple blobs. Try to find your own path. :wink:

(begin rant)
this ‘dream project’ thing puts way too much on a very small project- 8 months is not a lot of time. How about, things that have made you ‘curious’.
(end rant)

Maybe this will not help you right now, but-
do you mean that you love films and television, or that you would love to make films and television shows.

Big difference.

One way would be to look at ways, as a designer, to find unmet needs for people who make films and entertainment. Find a studio, watch them work, document it, make some concepts, and test it. Could be as simple as researching a network news weatherman. Very straightforward project.

Another way to do it is to make a film through a designer’s mentality . Much different project that has different conditions/ problems:

  1. Do you have teachers that would be into this? Do they have the capability to help you to make sure that the end result is one of a designer, (and not as an artist, documentary filmmaker, etc.) Subject doesn’t have to be about design, the mentality does.

  2. Does your school have video/ film departments for the equipment? Can you hook up with people to help with editing, acting, props, etc.

  3. Do you have the time/ background material to pitch both the idea of making a film and to pitch the film itself? Gotta be both to show your passion and to pursuade your teachers.

There’s been plenty of designers before you who have been successful with this. If interested, I can send you some links, etc.

check out www.noamtoran.com

Thanks to everyone for replying. I agree that too much pressure is being put on us for this project - especially when we are being told that the next 8 months could determine our future careers. My Dad is a production designer in Vancouver and I have started talking to him about this. He is getting me in contact with some costume designers. I think I could be onto something. I am really interested in props, but need to figure out if designing a prop for an upcoming film would count as I.D. and/ or designing for a human need. I am thinking that something in film/ TV could be the way to go, whether it be behind the scenes or on film. Keep the suggestions coming if you have them, and I loved that Team America example… can anyone think of any other examples that could be related to this project?

you have done months of research…what do you have to show for it then?
if nothing…design a tv and have someone drop it on your head.

Hey Bbarn: Yes, I’ve done months of research in the area of health and fitness, but I’ve exhausted that topic. I live and breathe health and wellness anyways, so although I assumed it was a perfect field for me to focus a thesis on, I have learned that some of our passions are better left alone when it comes to I.D. I’d say I know most of the current products, trends, statistics, equipment, services, what works and what doesn’t related to the fitness industry, so my knowledge base on that topic in enormous. In short, I have lots to show for the past few of months, just nothing I can use for the next few!

I think you’re right in thinking this. However it’s confusing trying to figure out which of our “passions” will make a suitable thesis project.

If you want my opinion, I’d say look for a problem to solve, rather than “a thesis with the theme of (blank)” to do.

My dream job was, and still remains a concept designer for films/tv/videogames but when it came time for thesis, I found that there are not many problems in the field that ID can solve, and so i focused my attention on the area of the environment… WEALTH of problems there to solve :smiley:

Simple- connect the 2. (health/wellness and film/movies)

Your concept lies in between and connects them together.

That is where I would go.

i cant believe im hearing this talk on this forum. ID people saying there are no problems to be solved in the area of film/tv/games etc? Jesus Christ. Maybe one of the only times you get to design for WHATEVER YOU WANT, and your gonna throw your passion to the curb? You should have been looking into your passion from the time it became your passion, not a few months before a thesis project. I really dont believe its your “passion” if you can find an area of it to study for a project.

Do something that can be a senior project then, and bore you, your classmates and instructors to death. Make some toenail clippers or a fruit scanner.

This is the last place I would think to hear this melarchy. :open_mouth:

I think I am doing a cup holder for my final thesis project.

Yes. The project is to design anything inside or on a car ( product ). so the most generalized category will be storage. I think either I have to be very specific ( with regards to the need, car type/model and user ), or something general like the car seat or cup holder. So “cup holder” was mentioned most in the survey I sent out ( too bad you didn’t receive one ). I don’t know, still researching.

Looking forward to see that, seriously.

so what car did you decide on? S4?

i drive an A4 quattro and the cup holders fing blow.

My friend’s 01 golf cup holder isn’t much different from my mom’s 03 A3. So how does yours blow?

im not sure what the golf looks like but the audi one has two side by side and you push it down to open the holder. So once it is open you can only fit one size cup. that sucks cause i cant fit anything in that i buy at a store besides a can or med drink from Whendeez. I would like it to be able to hold a can but then my vitamin water bottle as well. But the MAIN PROBLEM is that the two are side by side which does not allow both holders to be used at once, unless there are two perfectly vertical objects in there, ie. 12oz can. so if i stop at whendeez and someone is in my car, the passenger gets to hold the drink while i use the one cup holder.

I hear ya. Apparently it wasn’t designed for people who like Big Gulps.

boy this thread went down the swirlybath.