My class, digiTOOL, was originally offered as an introduction to digital fabrication at Carnegie Mellon University. I took over the class in 2017 and rewrote the curriculum with the following goals:
Open to all majors, this class is offered by IDeATe, an interdisciplinary program that takes an integrative approach to design, art, and technology.
They showcase this ability through the development of a process document portfolio piece. These process documents include intention, research, inspiration, sketches, renderings, and final product photographs. Examples of student work from my classes can be found below.
digiTOOL is a basic fabrication course. My personal teaching goals, however, include an understanding of maker culture and the development of a personal process. Students are exposed to the following:
Taught as the CAD>CAM>CNC workflow, students learn fabrication through 3D printing and laser cutting.
Students must plan their own projects to design and build. This includes a cardboard prototype and project plan.
All students are required to document their work for this course. Final portfolios showcase their process and outcome.
The primary course reading is Walter Benjamin’s Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction. Students discuss why we makes things and for whom.