En blogg från Högskolan i Borås

måndag 23 april 2012

Teaching Exchange at Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weissensee

I have been at the Kunsthochschule Berlin-Weissensee, Berlin, Germany as teaching exchange with textile and surface design department. The workshop I am leading is a part of an E-Lab semester course, where students develop their individual project which deals with interaction design and e-textiles.

From 16th-18th of April, I have lead the first workshop on e-textile sensors. There was 15 students from textile design, fashion design, product design and graphic design department.
For the fist day, we went through the basic knowledge on e-textile materials and its properties, how textile sensors are constructed and functions. Then each of the students built their own textile button and pressure sensor.

Then we explored building various kinds of e-textile sensors, such as zipper slider, pompom sensor, stroke sensor.. so on.

Above image is crochet mouse squeeze sensor.
Not all the students were familiar with textile techniques, and we used a lot of improvisational techniques and tools to make a functional sensors.

On second day, we started with bubble wrap felting with conductive wools to make felted pressure sensors.
We took the advantage of sunny spring weather in Berlin to felt in outside.

Then connected these textile sensors with Arduino microcontroller boards to read data, and programmed simple functions such as lighting up LED according to the interaction on sensors.
The scope of this workshop is to familiarize with e-textile materials and incorporate them into interaction design scenario. From the second day afternoon to the third day was spent to develop an individual project which to realize a simple prototype of the explored idea.

Here are some outcomes by students from this 3 days workshop.

Laser cut (this prototype is cut by hand) push button structure with non-woven materials.

needle felted pen with felted color palette. She made it with processing sketch so you can draw on computer with this tool.

Fine cut thin fabric with copper conductive fabric made a very nice capacitive sensor. This prototype is with hand cut, but she is further implementing this fabric with leaser cutter.

these knitted tubes are filled with conductive wool, which changes its resistance when touched. it works as a keyboard triggering sound when connected with Arduino microcontroller.

A cat (like) interface with scratch sensor. It vibrates when you comfort the cat by scratching its stomach.

In the evening of 17th, They have organized a public lecture where I talked about my artistic project, as well as projects at the Swedish school of textiles. For this lecture, not only the participants of the workshop, but other students from other departments of Weissensee university came to join. It was quite nice to see the wide interest in the e-textile topic in the university.

  posted by Mika Satomi

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