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H-POINT book review
It can be easy to forget sometimes, but the world of car design is much more
than just pretty pictures. Even the most uncompromising of million dollar sports
cars have to fit human beings inside. Vehicle packaging and its effect on
the vehicles function, as well as appearance, is therefore very important, but
unfortunately a subject that can be easily overlooked. Especially in the quest for
"pretty" designs and renderings. This is where H-Point comes in.
H-Point has been written by Stuart Macey and Geoff Wardle with the goal of
educating and inspiring student designers (and practising designers) with
information on how to use vehicle packaging to create an attractive, but useable
design. The two authors themselves are indeed very knowledgeable in this field.
Stuart has a background in cars that has included working as an engineer for
companies such as Porsche, Volvo, Honda, Renault, Kia, Opel, Mazda, Ford and
more... as well as leading the development of a Vehicle Architecture course for
the Art Center College of Design Pasadena. Stuart now has the enviable position
as Chief engineer for Ken Okuyama Design in Southern California.
Geoff also has a long and distinguished career in automotive design, having
worked as a designer for Chrysler, Peugeot, Saab and Ford amongst others, before
taking the position of Chair of Transportation Design at Art Center Europe. He is
presently the Director of Advanced Mobility Research at Art Center Pasadena.
So... the authors know what they are talking about! What about the book?
Basically the book is a step by step walk through of virtually every aspect of
packaging a motor vehicle, but importantly written from a designers point of
It begins with a very important look at the history of vehicle packaging. This
gives an interesting insight into the effect that vehicle packaging, and
therefore vehicle proportion, have on the design feeling of a vehicle. From
there you are guided through how to approach the task of packaging your own
vehicle designs, before finally moving into detailed study of all the different
elements that must come together inside a vehicle.
Much of the information is presented in picture form, which of course us
designers feel much more comfortable with, and the book does a very good job of
putting forward why packaging is key to creating a well proportioned vehicle.
Our one small wish for the book is that it had a splash more colour, as it is
mostly black and white (that may just be us though).
So what do we think overall? Simply put, if you are serious about building a
career in automotive design then this is a book not to miss. The book is full of
information that will help you create proper "design" projects for your folio! Even for those who
already have their career in vehicle design, the book should prove a useful point of
inspiration and reference.
To find out more, and to order your own copy then visit,
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