UWE Bristol design lecturer uses novel Hummingbird corkscrew design to teach students

Issue date: 12 September 2013


A beautiful corkscrew that resembles a hummingbird created by UWE Bristol lecturer, designer and inventor Phil Bommer will take on a starring role in product design lectures at UWE Bristol this year.

A symbol of the journey that a designer has to travel to get a new product into manufacture and thereafter to market, Phil's efforts to market his Hummingbird corkscrew will demonstrate the challenges implicit in developing a new product. Phil emphasises the importance of helping students understand the sometimes long process involved.

Phil explains, “The Hummingbird Corkscrew is the first product from the 'Helpful Friends' Collection and represents the launch of Bristol based design company BOHA. After two years in development the design is finished and ready to go into production.

“Originally I was looking for a concept that would be both useful and playful in its design. I had this idea for a range of products that would be like 'Helpful Friends' that would almost come to life whenever you needed to do a task. The thought of a hummingbird that would land on your bottle of wine and pull the cork for you simply made me smile; and that's why I choose to do this one first.

“The road to innovation and creativity is a rocky and tough for the lone inventor. I have always been keen to encourage the students I work with at UWE Bristol to take their ideas and make them real and I believe I should practice what I teach. I am going to try to fund my project using crowd funding to help raise the last part of the £47,000 project cost needed to get the hummingbird corkscrew into people's homes.”

After nearly two years of developing his first product Phil is about to take that final step to failure or success using 'crowd funding' website Kickstarter.com to raise funding for his hummingbird corkscrew to cover tooling and manufacturing costs.

The Humming Bird corkscrew goes live on 'kickstarter.com' between 16 September and 15 October 2013. Phil concludes, “I hope that by sharing my project with the students that it will provide a useful insight and reassure them that the same challenges of marketing a new product equally reside with those of us who are experienced designers.”

To pledge visit www.kickstarter.com and type 'humming bird corkscrew'. To view the hummingbird design see UWE Bristol News flickr

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