Making in LCF 3D Studios: A Collaborative Process

  • Jenny Parker: Jewellery Technician, LCF

Brief description of session and activities

The session will expose the layers of collaboration inherent in making and as models of good practice in an Open Access workshop by presenting three student projects realised in the 3D Studios workshops at LCF Golden Lane, with an interactive group discussion and activity surrounding the curious objects from different stages of their processes.

Students from a range of courses use the 3D Studios workshop creating a live cross-disciplinary workshop, where they are encouraged to work with Technicians across the site and where possible across LCF. They learn to co-ordinate and communicate with industry partners, skilled craftspeople from furriers to glass blowers, to companies producing innovative materials, whilst utilising traditional making skills in prototyping and finishing. This includes integrating technology and CAD/CAM processes.

A case study is Ian, an MA Fashion Artefact student and the first product of his collection, a perfume bottle. We worked with him to create prototypes using modelling clay, pouring plaster into balloons, and working into these forms. Using the digital suite at LCF he worked with our colleagues there to scan these shapes and render them in CAD, used to cut bespoke stands from hardwoods using the CNC Milling Machine in 3D workshop. He took these samples to a glass blower with whom he developed a working relationship allowing him to experiment and develop the forms in different shades and scales of glass. Taking the holes in these glass forms we modelled ‘stoppers’, prototyped them using cuttlefish casting and demonstrated efficient finishing techniques both for this and the wooden stands. These masters were taken to a casting foundry before returning to our workshop where he cleaned, polished and patinated them.

The session will begin after introductions, with a quick practical group activity, simulating the layers of the making process as the participants take a concept, decipher the skills they have as peer collaborators and their different approaches to communicating and realising that concept in 3D. Presented with objects and images from various stages of the making process, abstract from their context, the groups will be asked to discuss and question the processes and collaboration involved in each, followed by a short presentation from each student, showcasing their project and giving their perspective on the different types of collaboration they instigated and experienced.

How will students be involved in the session?

The presentations and group activities will be centred around handling and discussing pieces of students work, samples, materials and experiments after which each of the student ‘case studies’ will give a short talk about their work and their experiences of collaboration.

What will participants take away from the session?

The aim of the session is to demystify collaboration in the making process; the realisation of an idea. The participants should take away a greater knowledge of all of the different elements involved in the making process and the extensive collaboration used in the 3D workshops.