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Meet Studio Potluck from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

12 teams came to compete at the Stanley Black & Decker Makerspace in Towson, MD.  This season teams are an exclusive group of talented and gifted college students from around the country.  With majors ranging from Architecture to Electrical Engineering to Interactive Arts, the teams all had the same goal…. To create and design a brand new product in 48 hours. 

Watch students Amber, Liam, Ramón and Chelsea, Fine Arts students from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, when they compete on our College v. College Competition. Watch as Studio Potluck gets creative on Make48 during season 3.  And read and watch what they have to say about their team and  in their own words. 


What made you want to be a part of Make48? 

  • Our mentor, Jim TerMeer, suggested we take part in this competition as he saw a solid team in us. We were more than excited to enter a competitive design field after our studies together in Chicago. 

What was it like working as a team? Was it what you expected? 

  • Since we had worked together in a year long intensive studio, we felt quite comfortable with each other. Some jobs were loosely delegated beforehand but we all had an understanding of the nature of the competition. Things needed to be flexible and our team works very well with flexibility and strict deadlines. 

How did you go about putting your team together? 

  • Our team came about upon choosing strengths within our own design community. We needed all our members to be strongly conceptual. From our time in Chicago that was ingrained into our practice. We needed a craftsman, someone to take time and energy to perfect all physical models. We also needed a 3D modeler just as much in order to realize and polish our final designs. And lastly, we needed someone with skills in video editing for our final presentation. We all shared some jobs but we were all very aware of our own skills and where to help out the most. 

What advantages did each of you bring to the team? 

  • We believe our team had a huge advantage due to our skill sets individually. While further investigating forms, Ramon was essential in thinking of things differently and in a fresh light, while ensuring that it all makes sense for mass manufacturing. Amber does not stop working and crushing it, whether it was storyboarding, copy editing, or just time management. So much wouldn’t have happened without her help. Chelsea was very well versed in video editing and 3D modeling. We were able to begin printing our first model within 2 hours of the competition because she could easily translate our sketches and concepts into a physical form. This gave us a big time advantage. I like to believe I brought some good leadership to the group along with my design thinking. I handled the surface finishing of our model and helped wherever I could in our 48 hours. 

What was the most difficult part about the competition? Roadblocks, setbacks? What came easier for your team? 

  • Well, Ramon was upset that weekend as he had lost his passport. That and my fever the night before, hence the DayQuil on our desk. Those were only slight setbacks. As for our model, the humidity that weekend in Baltimore was heavy so it affected our 3D printing quite a bit and required a lot more hand work on the surface.

What did you learn from the Make48 event? Looking back, anything you would’ve done different?

  • I think we learned a lot about how we each contribute to team situations. We had worked together for a long time before this competition and squeezing the whole year long design process into two days makes it clear the things you can do well and do quickly. Looking back, I think we did it exactly how we wanted to during each step. 

Overall what was the best past of the Make48 experience? 

  • I think our favorite aspect of the weekend was our confidence throughout it. We kept each other up and going and had a lot of fun working as a team. We had a very strong feeling from the start and knew we would come home happy. 


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