Chris Lane

So Christopher, tells us a little more about yourself and why you decided to study product design

“All my life I’ve been fascinated by how things work and how they are made. I have a passion for making useful things that function well and look good and am able to visualize product concepts in 3D. A few years ago I designed, constructed and launched a high altitude weather balloon that recorded its journey into space. I decided to study project design as I’ve always wanted to be involved in activities that are challenging, creative and technical.”

What made you choose BU?

“After attending the open day at BU I found out more about the content of the product design course and quickly realised this was exactly what I was after. With opportunities to spend practical time in the workshops utilising the excellent facilities to following the design process from initial design through to fully working prototype – this would give me a really rounded set of skills.  Very few of the universities I visited offered the opportunity to gain this type of experience.

“In addition to this, there was the inclusion of a placement year. During that year I worked for three different companies; one was a design consultancy called 7th Design & Invention in London, where I interacted with clients and contributed to some really exciting design briefs. I also worked for two different types of suppliers of hi-tech, futuristic set dressing and prop dressing components for movies and TV, Anarchy and Bobs Bits. These placements enabled me to use my creativity to produce props, some of which were used in the latest Dr Who series.  More recently I was also lucky enough to work at Pinewood Studios on the latest Star Wars film, which was an incredible experience.”

Part of your BSc (Hons) Product Design course is taking part in BU’s FoDE, where students showcase their designs, models and prototypes. Can you talk us through your project and your reasons for choosing this subject area in particular?

“CineClimb is a remote-controlled dynamic camera mount for rock climbers. It travels along a standard rock climbing rope and an attached GoPro camera captures stunning close-up footage of the climber as they ascend the wall. Despite huge advances in action camera technology there is a lack of video footage of roped climbing both indoors and outdoors.  As a keen climber myself it seemed a shame that footage of roped climbs was not available to inspire or educate climbers and non-climbers alike. This was confirmed by pro-climber Sasha DiGiulian who looked into developing a GoPro mount of her own to make filming this type of activity. Now that I have designed CineClimb it would be great to take this product to market and explore further enhancements.”

What do you think are the benefits of taking part in the FoDE?

“I visited the FoDE last year and found it really inspiring to see so many amazing product ideas that could change people’s lives for the better. It was also a fantastic opportunity to talk to other students as well as potential employers who are all enthusiastic about product design. Plus, the show is a great way to demonstrate how good you are at being creative and solving problems.”

Where to next? What are your career plans?

“My time at university has really helped me to develop a wide range of skills needed to be successful in product design. Initially, I would like to follow a career in product design perhaps working for an agency.  I like the idea of setting up my own company to take my ideas to market.”

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Jasmine Minogue, BA (Hons) Product Design

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