Nalu

Explore Serene Forms through a computer mouse.

2019

Form Exploration

Nalu is a computer mouse intended to bring serenity to its user. When thinking about serenity, I started to think about where I was raised on the peaceful shores of Maui, Hawaii. The literal meaning of the word Nalu in Hawaiian is “wave”, and the hapa-Hawaiian saying, to “Nalu it” means to “go with the flow.” As every person who learns to swim in the ocean knows, you don't fight the waves; you ride them. When leaving these wave-like sculptures around the studio, I noticed many fellow classmates playing with these sculptures in their hands as if they were computer mice. This natural inclination of others to use these forms as a mouse made it clear what the design’s function needed to be.

    Through approaching this object backwards with function following form, I noticed myself focusing on how the form makes you feel. My roots of being surrounded by water and my emotional attachment to the tides moving and waves crashing ashore drove me to embody this feeling in my form. By taking away unnecessary details, I was able to get to the core of serenity in its purest form. As a clean organic form, it was necessary to fine-tune every surface and curve. Through this project, I have learned about surfacing in Solidworks and Rhino, as half of Nalu is created in each. The key is to “Nalu it” and not force a surface to do anything it doesn’t want to do. 

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