Water Never Lies

Application to the Danish School of Design

In March I spent two weeks writing a 25 pages long application along with 1500 other hopeful kids. 204 of us went on to an interview and now, finally, 5 months later, along with 105 others, I got admitted to the  
Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts School of Design, hurray!

The application is focussed on illustrating your own creative process more than on showcasing a final idea, and with only about 2200 characters, a handfull of tweets or 1 normal A4 page, to spread across the entire 25 pages (A3) you have to get your message through in illustrations and images. This years topic was water, there was only one broad topic for everyone, from people applying to Game and Interaction Design to Textile Design. My own application is focussed on Industrial Design and creating it was two very enjoyable weeks of exploring, drawing, and crafting.

My final idea is a compressible reusable travelers water bottle with an easy to understand solar powered water quality indicator, based on smiley faces and traffic lights. Having spent 3 months in India before applying I was concerned with the increasing amount of bottled water consumption and its environmental impacts. I had been frustrated having to buy bottled water and not be able to dispose of the bottles in any responsible manner. In India the tap water was generally not an option but a lot of local hotels and restaurants would have their own water purifier. But even though locally purified water has a way smaller environmental footprint than bottled water and is a lot cheaper, tourists especially would still cling to bottled water. The problem is that people has an easier time trusting the bottled water than the locally purified water even though statistically there is absolutely no reason to place more trust in the water bottling corporations. I even found that in areas with reliable pure tap water, water bottling corporations have been running smear campaigns and successfully caused people to doubt the quality of the local tap water and choose the bottled kind instead. So I wanted to enable people to choose clean water without having to blindly trust anyone. Cheap portable quality testers already existed but you would have to be able to translate complicated numeric values to drinkable or not drinkable, remember to have fresh batteries in the device and remember to actually bring the device. So I tried to integrate the tester in the bottle, improve the interface so anyone would get it with no prior instructions and make it work anywhere, anytime as long as the sun is shining.
The application is in Danish but there is plenty of illustrations to get you through. Hopefully it can be of inspiration to people applying next year and if someone feels like making the bottle a reality, do get in touch.

download as pdf