Tuesday, March 30, 2010

HP x Project Runway Event

Last Friday I had the opportunity to attend a HP x Project Runway brunch where I got to see how HP's technology was being used on the show by the current contestants of Project Runway. Their most recent challenge was to create a print using HP TouchSmart PCs and bring them to life by first printing on fabric and then creating showstopping design. HP TouchSmart PCs integrate a high-definition widescreen display with a multitouch-enabled screen. Users can simply pinch, rotate, flip or drag a finger across the screen of the PC to create designs in a natural, intuitive way.

I met some of the contestants including Emilio, Jay and Seth Aaron and got to see their designs up close. Jay kindly explained how the challenge although not his favorite was definitely up there as it was amazing to see their original print designs come to life in the blink of an eye (or at least a 24 hr turnaround). HP had developed huge digital printers to print onto cotton sateen for a relatively soft fabric with super vibrant colors. Jay said the toughest part was actually picking the exact shade of green he wanted to use from thousands to create his perfect Ninja inspired corset girl look.

Emilio later showed me how to use the print creating program and set a repeat and it was as easy and fun as 1, 2, 3!
I tried my hand at creating my own print and only wish that I could have seen it come to life as I think it would have made for a fun dress. The touch screen took a little getting used to but it was fun to "draw" shapes with your fingers or even the end of a Sharpie to create something truly one-of-a-kind. Not too shabby, right?

I also got the chance to experiment a little with the HP TouchSmart tm2 notebook which features a screen that can be rotated around and converted to slate mode, morphing it into a sketchpad with digital pen. This notebook actually comes standard with this Corel Draw software so any aspiring artist can sketch their hearts out. To be honest, drawing on a computer vrs drawing on paper has a bit of a different feel but once you get used to it it can be quite fun. I think the freedom of knowing that no line is permanent as there is an undo button and the special effects really can add to a drawing.

Also, if you don't want to buy or have a million art supplies (perhaps due to a small NYC apartment) there are a wide variety of tools that you can play with from spray paint to sponge brush effects. I was thinking my next notebook might be a MAC, but this drawing program alone makes for a strong case to change my mind :) After all my current laptop (also an HP) has served me pretty well over the last 4 years.

Finally the highlight of my day was meeting designer Vivienne Tam. She is quite an extraordinary, intelligent woman. She makes me feel at ease by clasping my hand gently like a dear friend and asking if she has met me before.

She explains, "When I started my business I couldn't afford very expensive materials... so I created my own prints to make my designs special, and people recognize my designs and it has become my signature". She actually hopes that last week's episode of Project Runway, "inspires a lot of people to create their own prints, and create something for yourself...Make your own clothes, make something special and feel special. Because everyday of life if you are creative it will make your life fruitful and beautiful and enjoyable...Why play [video] games when you can play around with prints?"

Vivienne Tam not surprisingly is quite the tech savvy lady as she shows off her digital clutch and tells me how she works on prints digitally everyday! She starts telling me about the butterfly headphones that come with her clutch and I ask her if she is a big fan of music as I know that Beats by Dr.Dre was an integral part of her digital clutch. She enthusiastically shares, "Fashion plus technology plus music is Triple Happiness!". I can't help but agree!


Yumi said...


Shelly said...

what an amazing night!

Erin said...

definitely amazing! i had so much fun using the technology, i feel like the possibilities are endless plus Vivienne Tam was so adorable and incredible! i am a very lucky girl sometimes!

Janet said...

I have been searching for the program used for the Project Runway creating fabric challenge. I have an HP Touchsmart and love it, and as an aspiring artist I would love to be able to play with my computer and expand my artistic knowledge. You said that the HP notebooks had Corel Draw, is that the program they used on the show to create their fabrics? ANY help in answering this question would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks in advance,


Erin said...

CorelDraw was used for sketching but I think HP made a special program to create fabrics just for the show. If you know how to create a repeat you can make your own patterns in CorelDraw or PhotoShop :-)

Janet said...

Thank you Erin! I've been going nuts trying to find out what program they used. I actually don't want to make fabric, I just thought it was neat that they were doing such artistic things on the same HP I have, and want to use mine for artistic purposes also.

Thanks again for your help! Janet

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...