Investigation I — Handheld Lamp

Made by Emily Liu

Created: February 20th, 2023



My project is about the new relationships we can have with objects when we have to spend more time and intimacy with them. I made a lamp that only fully turns on when you're "holding hands" with it.



This speculative Amazon product mock-up is definitely what first got the ball rolling on my project. The first round of feedback I got inspired me to think more about how our relationships with entities change when we have to spend more time with an interaction that is otherwise fleeting (flicking on/off a switch for a light).

During the class activities, I also realized a trend within my brainstorming was physical intimacy and the anthropomorphizing of everyday objects. 





The first idea for my project didn't flush out the fabrication for covering and uncovering the light part of the lamp. Therefore, in terms of the physical nature of the project, I ideated most on how the shade would look.

The main conceptual development of my project came from pushing the aspect of "conversation" with the lamp. How could a relationship turn into/benefit from a specific conversation? 

Therefore, I drew out many high-level user flows that were then diminished into one, based on what was most reasonable to physically construct by the deadline. I decided there would be three main states: 1. OFF, 2. asking for PASSWORD, 3. ON. 

In the project I have to present, the OFF state is represented by the light not yet being switched on. The PASSWORD state is when the light is switched on, but blocked so that only "PASSWORD" can be seen. And the ON state is when the "password" (aka handholding) is unlocked and the password shade moves to reveal full light.