Making and Empowerment
Karla Saenz, Melanie Baljko
Hamidi, F., Saenz, K., and Baljko, M. Sparkles of Brilliance: Incorporating Cultural and Social Context in Codesign of Digital Artworks. Proceedings of the 2014 conference on Interaction design and children (IDC'14), 2014, 77-84. Available Online.
Hamidi, F., Baljko, M. Subversive Interaction Design: Digital Design and Inspiration. Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Design and Emotion, 2014, 25-31.
The Maker Culture or DIY Culture is a contemporary movement in which hands-on small-scale fabrication and manufacturing methods are used by non-professionals to create small batch customized designs. Making has the potential to engage children and adults in self-directed projects that support creativity and self-efficacy.
In the past few years, I've been investigating ways in which making can support learning and empowerment. Among other projects, I co-conducted a series of maker workshops in Oaxaca, Mexico, in which children created digital interactive artifacts, called alebrijes that were inspired by local folk art traditions. Key aspects of this project included incorporating relevant cultural elements in the workshops, using locally sustainable materials and using technology to support collaboration.
Please watch the following video to see the children's digital interactive art.