Featured uMaker: Kenneth Roberts
1. Hey Ken, so you are currently a designer and work in several kinds of media. Would you mind telling us more about your background and what kind of design you do? Well, to start, after years of creating, collaborating, and freelancing, while attending design schools, I found it difficult to pin point the type of design I did. For the longest I went by the title 'freelance designer', however, I needed one that truly captured my capabilities in the design field. My biggest challenge was, and still is, not overwhelming HR with my experiences, but I knew then, that my title was very important for solidifying future work, and continuing to do what I loved to do. A quick aside: My college and more so, the high school I attended both opened up a world of design possibilities I would have never imagined. Picking one, felt like choosing a favorite child, but I loved doing "all of the design", and I intended on doing "all of the design"...
Long story short, in my search, I landed some rather life changing "brainstorming" gigs with Gfk and egg strategy. There, I could finally use my design capabilities, and thirst for knowledge, in a fast pace and free-flowing, iteration session... honestly, it felt like a freestyle session, but with design thinking!!! The props I'd get, came from company leaders and masters of their crafts, giving me the biggest motivation in solidifying my craft!!!! Now I professionally go by, Meckenical Robot, Creative Consultant. With this title in hand, I've since enjoyed helping others think around all sort of design challenges. I've had the opportunity of working with a number of playwrights, copywriters, design teams, and Event companies, and companies like Hershey's, Ferrara Candy co., Mead notebooks, Chamberlain, and Liftmaster. My goal is always connecting the dots most people are too close to see, and I continue to hone my skills to better convey ideas through the best possible means... which brings me your number 2...
2. How did you find out about uMake? What made you stick to it? My relationship with uMake started around mid-late 2016, and I had been overdue on getting a new computer (RIP LAPPY). With cost and capabilities in mind, my tech research lead me to buy an iPad Pro. I fell in love with the freedom and almost the very next day, I stumbled on uMake in my search for a mobile 3d program. I was literally modeling designs on the bus, on the train, on the couch, outside, in a hammock, during the day, or all night, I completely fell in love with the program. With the power of this iPad Pro, and amazing applications like uMake, it completely replaced my old laptop and ushered in my new MacBook Pro....and a whole host of new MacBook/iPad features. I'm excited to see what the future of uMake holds, and I'm happy to help in any way I can.
3. Your uMake models are really intricate and some of them push the limits of the iPad. What are you using uMake for and where do you find inspiration for your designs? LOL, what can I say, you guys created an environment that's really fun to create in... intricacies and hardware limitations were a natural byproduct. I'm really having fun now, and at the beginning, I only used uMake to showcase renderings for event design, trade shows booths, corporate galas and weddings. After work stuff was put aside, I started seeing where else I could apply uMake. While I was pulling sketchbook things into the program, a lot of inspiration came from both artist in the VR community, like Goro Fujitsu, and other uMakers, like Zhang Nan. Those guys works, are SOOOOO Awesome!!!
4. What do you love about uMake? Has it made a difference in your workflow and if so, how? By my nature, sitting still never worked well for me, (nor for my conduct grades before high school. ;). Before getting on uMake, a modeler would have to collect their references, lay them out, sit in their chair and get to modeling... hours, if not days later, you get a model, and those models would still feel inexpressive. Then out of nowhere, in comes uMake, with its intuitive interface, and portable iPad form factor, it blew its predecessors out of the water!!! And that was inspirational in itself. uMake allowed me to convey sketched ideas... in 3D. Hours of work turned to minutes, and I could iterate 3D designs quickly and efficiently. Also, side note, I don't know if you meant to do this, buuuuut... when you look at the program with one eye shut.... magic happens, it completely BLEW MY MIND! which leads me into 5... 5. What features would you like to see in the future in uMake? How about wireless VR Capabilities! Maybe working tandem over wifi with an iPhoneVR headset, with Bluetooth controllers or camera gesture recognitions?!?! ...man, I know my fiancée would probably get mad after the 3rd day, VR headset strapped to my forehead, even when not in use... "oh that's just how I carry my phone now." 😂
6. What is your favorite project you’ve created in uMake so far? That would have to be the Loaded Longboard. I started that one on thanksgiving, wanting to see how well I could handle threading for nuts and bolts, and some more intricate surfacing details. After I finished that one, I felt more confident in what I could create for future concept designs. It gave me more knowledge in ways I could manipulate drawn lines in uMake, and you gotta love new shortcuts. That reminds me, I need to make a video of that...
7. Are there any models that you've been aching to create in uMake that you haven't had the chance to yet? OMG, there's sooooo many models and visual scenes in mind!!!! For instance, those futurist tabi sneakers and running character (3D storyboard panel), were just the beginnings of what's rolling out of my sketchbooks... I will say however, I am currently experimenting with a workflow that will turn my uMake models, into actual papercraft models, and I'm really looking forward to that. I'll definitely keep you guys posted!!! 8. Are there any models you wish existed in the uMake Playground that you could just open and draw around? TRAINS and BUILDINGS!(says the inner graffiti kid in me.) I'm only saying that because of the nature of that storyboard I mentioned. More of those element will be coming out soon, but a mix of styles, would definitely add a more authentic feel to a city scape. And then...
9. You like to post your work on Facebook. Why Facebook and do you post your uMake work on other platforms? Well, for the most part, what I post on Facebook, is usually the product of an IFTTT applet. Which also posts to Pinterest and Twitter, like a neat little domino effect. With those posts, all I have to do is save my images with some unique names, in a linked Dropbox folders and IFTTT does the rest. This method really help with having an online presence without having to budget for your own social media coordinator. At the moment though videos are my only tricky spot, but I have been looking at Instagram for a possible solution. We'll see where it goes for 2017. 10: Whats next— now that you use uMake heavily, do you plan to take your uMake projects further in other software or in real life? I have a number of things on the horizon because as a designer, I've never felt more equipt and geeked in my life... I've been able to take some of my more NDA protected uMake projects, into Photoshop/Illustrator, and then to the event spaces for production. Needless to say, uMake has changed the modeling game, and with the variety of export options, uMake really allows for some serious work. I can't wait to get a nice papercraft modeling studio going, because this 24in plotter of mine, isn't destined for vinyl alone. Please let me know who else I can help!!! Thanks for this opportunity to be featured. [caption id="attachment_1112" align="aligncenter" width="225"]
February 2, 2017