Media in design 2D / 3D
HfG Offenbach’s Central Computer Lab is used by students of both Product Design and Visual Communication and is correspondingly supervised by the two faculties. Jörg Langhorst and colleague Agnes Meyer-Wilmes work here together. Alongside networked computer work spaces with OS X and Windows systems, the Central Computer Lab provides input and output devices such as flatbed scanners, cutting plotters and printers ranging to A0 format.
Regardless of their individual focus in learning, all those working in design should have a good command of basic design software. The courses offered by the Central Computer Lab provide students with the necessary skills as well as advising them on the suitable and adequate means. The realization that the computer may not always represent the most suitable tool, but that rather, at times a hand-drawn sketch or a handmade preliminary model can be a faster way to reach one’s goal in the design process than trying to directly design in the computer without previous planning, is certainly a part of this learning process.
Much of what we, as designers, define by means of a computer, can today be accomplished by service providers at a low cost and to a professional standard. In this, it is necessary to know the appropriate vocabulary in order to provide designs for production without difficulties along the way. This vocabulary includes, amongst other things, knowledge of various manufacturing techniques, file formats and parameters, such as for example color management in digital printing or the observance of certain production tolerances in digital modelling.
Alongside basics courses, support of individual student research projects, leading right up to their diploma, is a large part of the work in the Computer Lab. Every design project presents new challenges, sometimes a concept needs to be reviewed before the model-building stage and just as often, a design requires an unusual strategy for its practical implementation.