Designer Michelle Vandy Conquers RSI By Designing With Her Nose #ArtTuesday
By mounting an Apple trackpad on a tripod at nose-level, designer Michelle Vandy was able to return to rigorous digital design work after crippling RSI appeared to have eliminated her choice of career after 10-15hr workdays in Photoshop as an undergrad.
…Then It happened. I was sitting in my room late one evening fiddling around with this external touchpad I had lying on my desk and without thinking, lifted it up to eye level and touched it with my nose. “Click”. I tried swiping too – it worked! I opened up photoshop with shaking fingers, hadn’t opened it in months! I had a few more goes holding the trackpad to my nose and swiping left and right, up and down and the movements felt strangely natural to me. Next thing I’m dialing my father on Skype again. I told him about the new idea I’d just stumbled upon. His told me he had just the right parts lying around in his workshop and would put together this device right away. True to his word the parcel arrives a week later. This time It felt right straight away and I start practicing away drawing line after line. I finally look up at my stick figure masterpiece resembling the works of a three year old and Felt so excited. My nose-technique proved useful even when it came to typing, just not very efficient.
I wrote a large chunk of my bachelors thesis on the ipad with my nose (I looked absolutely ridiculous) – no teachers ever found out. (Omg I can’t believe I just revealed that…)
Later on that same year I signed up for some project courses. However – I wasn’t ready to tell anyone about my new unconventional way of working. It was way too embarrassing. So despite having a personal desk and all the required gear at school, I started working from my student apartment bedroom, which fortunately was only a short walking distance from the art and design department. So after every lecture I’d wonder back to my secrete workstation to complete the assignments that had to be handed in. My excuse was that I couldn’t concentrate when people were sitting next to me – and to this the course assistants would simply shake their heads as if to conclude, ” the students these days…”
But I was happy – I’d somehow managed to complete my first project course without making my RSI worse and I’d validated the nose-pad device….
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