Thursday, 30 April 2009


1. CONTEXT: In what ways is this piece of work sustainable?
My work highlights the problems caused by over consumption of plastic bottles and aims to encourage the audience to think and use a bottle for life. Through presenting various statistics accompanied by visuals of bottles crawling from bushes and bins, this 37-second advert promotes a sustainable lifestyle whilst leaving a minimal carbon footprint through being digital.

2. CRITERIA: What are the criteria that define your design/artwork as ‘good’?  
Being an advert that promotes conscientious behaviour this design achieves ‘good’ status through informing its audience of the already existing problems regarding the production and elimination of plastic bottles. Accompanied by a serious yet motivating instrumental track the message is highlighted using exciting visuals and bright colours, which ends with offering a solution.

3. MATERIALS: What results have you found by applying Life Cycle Analysis to every material you have employed? Where are there still problems? 
Having analysed the life cycle of plastic bottles I was motivated to make this short clip. Discovering all the problems and inconveniences that are caused by plastic it became obvious that I had to create a advert that would highlight this problem as opposed to encourage re-cycling as most people do when tackling the problem of plastic bottles. With plastic bottles it is not about recycling the, it s about just not using them.

4. INFLUENCE: What research/facts/statistics/knowledge have directly influenced your work? 
Every statistic that I found in relation to waste rates influenced this piece of work.  Finding out about the life cycle of a plastic bottle and how unhealthy it is drink out of plastic bottles really motivated me to want to promote change. 

Who is the audience for the work? In what way do you hope it will influence an audience? 
The intended audience of this piece is the English speaking plastic bottle consumer.  Anybody that drinks bottled water daily without thinking about its repercussions.  Although a very broad spectre I believe that everybody that consumes plastic bottles should be made aware of the problems caused by plastic bottles and be taught the alternatives.  My piece is designed to be played on television thus it is logical that the audience is quite broad.

What ‘environment’ are you protecting/changing with this piece of work? 
With this piece I am intending to protect the environment that is otherwise damaged by the production and elimination if plastic bottles.   Areas that may be used as landfills, workers who’s job it is to melt the bottles when it comes to recycling as well as our general landscapes such as fields and beaches that are ever more polluted by plastic bottles

How does this design/artwork incorporate elements of your own design manifesto? 
My design manifesto states that good design must educate in a universal language. Although the message is written in English, the language used is simple and to the point meaning that all that read it will understand. My manifesto also states that good design must supply to demand and not create new demand which my advert also includes as it is promoting the use of an already existing product- Sigg bottle for life. My final point is good design is common sense which is what this advert strives to promote.

5. PURPOSE: What factors helped you decide to do the project you have chosen? 
Before this project began I new I wanted to focus plastic bottles. To me plastic bottles are a short-term practicality with severe long-term consequences.  Knowing that I wanted to reach as many people as possible the most obvious way was to create an advert that would ideally be played on prime time television. 

6. VISUAL CULTURE: How have you made decisions regarding the visual nature/qualities/  icons you have employed? 
The bottles used for the advert are range of brands, sizes and colours to show that any plastic bottle can be replaced. I chose to use a Sigg bottle at the end because I believe them to be the best plastic bottle alternative as they are durable with a life long guarantee.
The music was chosen because it is slightly epic with a motivational ending. It is instrumental which was necessary as not to over complicate the message.

In what ways does your work appear ‘green’? Are you satisfied by this? 
My work appears to be green in that it is educating people to become green. Using simplicity, visuals and audio I am very satisfied with my piece of work

7. DIFFICULTIES: What problems did you face whilst working on this project? 
When working on the project I encountered the problem of not knowing how to include a message. I originally wanted to have voices saying the facts however this would have required more organization on my behalf as recording sound is complex and not as simple as I thought it would be.  I also found it hard to choose a voice as accent influences what is being said a lot. 

8. SYSTEMS: What system, if any, does your piece of work belong to/interfere with/improve upon? Please explain. 
My work belongs to a national education program. I believe it to be something everybody should be made aware of and something that the government should be promoting as it is through the reduction of un-necessary commodities we can begin to save our planet and our pennies.

 I have learnt a lot during this elective and it has changed the way that I see and approach many situations. I have achieved a deeper understanding of sustainability and the problems which are caused by over consumption. I have a close relation to the work i have produced and feel  motivated  to continue working with such issues in order to use my creative visions to create change.

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

The Final Piece.

Throughout this project i have looked closely at the use of plastic bottles world wide.  From daily consumption to plastic bottle housing the figures and facts are astounding.

An issue that has been of high interest to me for a while, i feel i have investigated thoroughly and tackled well. I am proud of my final piece and am currently working on getting it screened in the leeds university union where they recently banned the sale of plastic bottles.


Monday, 27 April 2009

Making the video

Having crafted with bottles and given my concept some more thought i have began to make my final piece. The aim of my final piece is to teach people to use just one bottle.  Using clips of discarded bottles on the move i aim to make the audience remember and question where their last bottle was left. 

This is the initial video. I like the was it looks however will continue to experiment over the order of scenes. At the moment there is no particular order. There are two bottles coming from dustbins and two from bushes. I think that it would be better to have one from a bin, then shrubs, then bin and finally another shrub. The final scene is almost final however the focus in on the group of bottles is wobbly and needs to be perfected.

The strongest part of the film (and arguably most important) is the scene when the bottles change into the metal bottle. 

The audio will become a very important part of this advert. I am still uncertain of this;

To use one voice or many? 
To use music or silence?

These are crucial decision that must be made soon. The video cannot stay silent as it does not convey the desired message without explanation.

The link below is a great example of a similar concept. An educational and motivational short clip that successfully uses audio and visuals to reach its audience.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Crafting with bottles

Being torn between crafting with plastic bottles and campaigning against them for my final project i thought the best option was to have a go at both. Working with old bottles and adding some other exciting materials, i produced a little collection of good that are durable, practical and technically usable in everyday life.

Bangles with Pearls sewn own using woolen string.
Ring with Copper Pearl sewn with woolen string

2 bottle bottoms sewn together with zip to make zip.

 Napkin holder made from the top of the bottle

Napkin holders and purse with contents.

Steel Presentation

A very practical and sustainable material, steel is one of the most used materials in the world.  
Recycled steel production has increased immensely over the last years. a diverse material that becomes the base for the most durable bottle for life.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Sustainable mapping based on the practice of Lucienne Roberts. A graphic designer who question what good is, uses a similar exercise to outline what is good and important to him.

My places

Costa-Rica; Montezuma Waterfalls

United Kingdom; Weymouth beach
Germany; Senden

The world is a beautiful, epic and organic kingdom. I have been lucky enough to visit and spend time in many a beautiful and wondrous place. The times i have spent in these both local and distant havens have been some of the best in my life. Preserving these oasis's is essential to me as they represent the world at its best, at its purest. Undamaged by man and unaffected by population. It is these places that are my secrets, places that i hope will forever remain so i can continue to escape from the madness of the man made world.

United Kingdom; North Sunderland

Costa Rica; Monteverde

Monday, 20 April 2009

Plastic Statistics

Statistics are important effective figures that can help in proving a point. They can be used to introduce shock and misbelief. As with most statistic the ones on plastic bottle consumption are shocking and heroic however show glimpses of change and hope.......however, dare we question how they found this all out? (
  •  1 tonne = 20.000 plastic bottles.
  • Recycling a single plastic bottle can conserve enough energy to light a 60W light bulb for up to 6 hours.
  • On average, every household uses 500 plastic bottles per year of which only 130 are recycled.
  • 11 % of house-waste is plastic, 40% of that plastic bottles.
  • 25 PET bottles=an adults fleece.
  • Plastic Packaging uses around 2% of al crude oil.
  • Recycling 1 tonne of plastic bottles saves 1.5 tonnes of carbon.
  • 346.500 tonnes of plastic packaging waste were recycled in 2004.
  • The quantity of plastic bottles collected for recycling has more then doubled since 2004.

Design Manifesto

In order to be successful you must know what you want. In order to create good design you must know what is important for you.  In order to be coherent you must outline your beliefs....................... these are mine.

I believe that;

1) Good design must educate in a universal language.

2) Good design must be efficient and minimal as not to waste or encourage wastage.

3) Good design must supply to demand and not create new demand.

4) Good design must have no environmental impact and improves personal viability.

5) Good design must bring people together and encourage collaboration.

6) Good design must be universal and inspirational.

7) Good design must respect, enhance and adhere to the life cycle of a material.

8) Good design sustains itself

9) Good design is Common-Sense.

All that a bottle can become.

When thinking about what a plastic bottle is or what it may become many ideas spring to mind.  Many Artists, Designers and Architects have explored the many possible ways to give a plastic bottle another life. 

Michele Brand is one such Artist, who uses plastic bottles to create intricate chandelier, wall hangings and room dividers;

Japanese artist/fashion designer Kosuke Tsumura says;
"The durability and abundance of PET plastic bottles makes them an ideal material for clothing and armour"
He explores the various ays of converting plastic bottles into original contemporary clothing.

Tadao Ando a Japanese Architect uses the plastic bottles to create innovative walls in offices. A practical design creating the divide desired by a wall however still allowing light to fill the whole room;

The most innovative and daring exampling of plastic bottle recyling and ingenuity must however be a man from Serbia, Radovanovic who decided to build a whole house of bottles. A good idea. The bottles are solid, durable and colourful.

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Preparation for final project

With a keen interest in animation and movie work, i believe it a highly effective mean of communication.  I believe that a effective shorts movie can fully engage its viewer and leave them influenced by the intended message.

With many people creating great short movies PES is my favorite and most influential artist to date. (Follow link below to view website)

Similarly on youtube many other artists have made animations about recycling plastic bottles

The short movie will consist of several different plastic bottles crawling out of dustbins in the streets, from train tracks, from rubbish dumps and other places where plastic bottles are usually disposed.  The point of this is to remind the viewer of all the places plastic bottles pile up.  After each bottle has moved out of its original position all bottles will come together in one shot and start forming one large bottle.  This large bottle will finally morph into a Sigg bottle and a voice will say; "don't use soo many, stick with just the one"-and finally; "Bottle for life". The end frame will be a mini diagram/drawing of a bottle for life and the words bottle for life.
I want this to be an effective movie that influences its viewer. It will be made in high quality giving it a professional look and the end captions will be made with a minimal deisign.

Experimenting outside with what the final video will look like i have made some prep pieces.

Useful links

The first plastic bag free town in the U.K-

Innovatve design with a purpose to help the other 90%-

Disease control company that uses design to help the dis-advantage

Final project/Why, What, How, Who, Where, When?

For my final project i will be creating a stop motion clip/advertisement that will encourage and  promote the use of a bottle for life.  

Everyday millions of plastic bottles are purchased and disposed.  Although many encourage recycling, this is an expensive and complicated process. Plastics come in all shapes and sizes and all require different processing techniques in order to be recycled and given a second life. It is an arduous task that many think more efficient then it actually is. The link below takes you to a report by BBC breaking down the process of plastic recycling.

Although recycling is a conscientious and beneficial way to dispose of our plastic waste it is arguable that it is not as effective as we are lead to believe.  Despite the efforts of countless councils to encourage citizens to recycle, England remains the king of landfill sites filling 20 millions tonnes a year.

In addition, it has been stated that more than 90% of environmental impact from a disposable  plastic bottle happens before the consumer opens it.  In order to make plastic oil is needed and as this source is rapidly declining we must all look for alternatives.

So if oil running out and recycling is so in-affective what shall we do with our plastics once we used them? Well, its simple really- just don't use any, then you wont have to get rid of any.  Through eliminating the use of plastic objects, we eliminate the necessity to recycle them. This can be achieved by buying packaging free products, using a bag for life and of course, using a bottle for life.

What is a bottle for life?
A bottle for life follows the same concept as a bag for life.  Having one bottle that can be re-filled, not damaged, stay sterile and be with you for life.

Sigg is a Swiss company that makes aluminum bottles that are made to last. An innovative yet simple design that presents the perfect solution to reducing plastic waste, the Sigg bottle is superior to any plastic bottle. Made of aluminum its lining is leach-proof, made with no lead and no phthalates. This means that unlike the average PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottle-(which is the plastic that most drinking bottles are made of)- no toxins or bacteria build up inside the bottle after repeated use.

What is the point?
   Within the age of the new eco-friendly warrior it is all about recycling and thinking green. With most campaigns promoting recycling it seemed to me that this was becoming ineffective. Despite everybody obsessively recycling it doesn't really seem to change anything. What i believe needs to be advertised are the objects which do not effect the environment, that can be used repeatedly without causing any consequences thus i will be making a video highlighting the benefits and of a bottle for life simply and effectively.

Good Design-from a sustainable perspective

Everything that is man-made requires design. Judging whether something is good or bad design from a sustainable view involves thinking about everything involved in both the production and elimination of the product. Life Cycle Analysis. The materials an object is made of and for what purpose are also essential factors when considering its advantages and disadvantages in regard to sustainability. 

Below is a list of 5 designs i consider to be good and mostly sustainable. All objects have been chosen because they are efficient and innovative. They are alternatives to long-term damaging products. 

Wind up Radio by Trevor Baylis 1996. England.
  •  Powered by human muscle power.
  •  Built for people without cheap or any electricity to be able to listen to the  news.
  •  Body made of  plastic and  inside of metal electronic mechanisms
  •  Manufactured globally- involves high energy in transport.
  •  Life span of roughly 10 years+
  •  Disposal involves elimination of plastics and electronics.
Although its production and disposal are damaging,it requires no damaging energy to operate.

Sigg Bottle by Ferdinand Sigg. 1908. Switzerland.

  • Aluminum bottle made with plastic cap.
  • Aims to replace the plastic bottle.
  • Resistant to shock and deformations- unlikely to break or crack.
  • Aluminum can be 100% recycled although the cap can not. 
  • Simple design
  • No health risks (unlike plastic bottles)

 A durable design that teaches sustainability through common-sense and great material selection

Chain driven Bicycle by J.K Starley.1885.U.K.

  • Human powered vehicle with 2 wheels, a frame and a chain.
  • Made of varying metals and rubber.
  • Damaging elimination however often recycled for many diverse purposes.
  • Simple comprehendible design.
  • Made for all ages, sizes and tastes.
  • Potential life guaranteed life span (excluding some parts)

A Universal design that is used by millions that harms virtually no-one.

Tripp Trapp Chair by Peter Opsvik for Stokke. 1972. Norway.

  • Children's chair designed to fit child throughout growth
  • Adjustable Seat and Foot rest
  • Offers ergonomic support for child
  • Made of durable, robust materials; Beechwood- encompassing  good design
  • Life long life span.
  • Company transports in bulk thus reducing emissions

 A genius chair that can be used by everybody- through good design a life long product is designed.

LifeStraw by Torben Vestergaard Frandsen.2005.Switzerland

  • A personal mobile water purification tool for those who don't have access to clean water
  • Turns  any surface water into drinking water 
  • Proven to be effective against waterborne disease through removing micro particles 
  • made if high impact polystyrene (outer shell), halogen based resin, anion exchange resin and patented activated carbon (interior)
  • Small and practical  design that is light and simple to use

A simple and hugely beneficial product that ameliorates the lives of millions.

Recycling & Sustainability.

" I am myself and what is around me, and if i dont save it, it shall not save me"
  Jose Ortega y Gassett
In an ever developing world, everyday consuming more and thinking less, the habitual routines of society persist to amaze me.  How naive and thoughtless many can be in over consuming and throwing away.  New products, new fashions and advancements in technologies, who knows where all the old things go?

An issue that i believe to be essential to sustaining human society,  the topic of Recycling & Sustainability has always interested me. Ever growing problems and repeated mistakes are something everybody should be aware and strive to change. As a conscientious  designer i believe it my responsibility to educate,inform and offer solution, leading by example in tackling the ever growing issue of our planet being taken over by our waste.
A vast subject to cover interpreted by millions, my personal interests focus on the issues and problems result of the excessive usage and consumption of plastic bottles.