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It all started when...

I kept reading about a lot of solar companies giving away solar lanterns to the underprivileged people stuck in their un-electrified homes in developing countries. According to their websites, hundreds and thousands of lives were improved and impacted due to their 'unique' solar lantern product. I do not doubt their stats. However, I feel like their products did not 'continue' making an impact in people's lives. Having lived in India myself for 22 years now, I realised how I haven't really seen most people use solar lanterns for daily household tasks. People still prefer and use kerosene lanterns/ candles. This got me thinking about why people haven't quite caught on with the trend of using solar lanterns even though solar technology is well-developed in the current times and plenty of solar lanterns have entered the market. After this, I did quite a lot of research to understand the problem. It took a long time for me to develop the concept of Make Glow. I wouldn't go to the extent of saying that Make Glow is the best solution that solves all problems around solar lighting but it is a sincere attempt at it. Make Glow is still developing and will constantly keep developing based on the new insights I gain upon thinking/ reading about the issue.

I am...

Nikitaa Sivaakumar, currently a second year MFA student at UC Davis, pursuing Product Design. I am particularly interested in developing low-cost products because I feel like adding a constraint on cost while still making a product fully-functional and aesthetically pleasing is challenging. Also, design is commonly perceived as a commodity of the rich. Through my works, I would like to challenge this notion and make design accessible to everybody. I am currently leaning more towards Human-centered design and possess a varied skillset consisting of design thinking, rapid prototyping, 3D modelling, 3D printing, laser cutting, HTML, CSS, Web Design and the Adobe creative suite.

I would love to hear your thoughts about make glow...

Drop me an email at nsivaakumar@ucdavis.edu

Check my portfolio on www.nikisiv.com