Matisse Backpack Prototype

An exercise in matching color to a painting: Woman on High Stool by Matisse.

Layers of mesh were deployed to create the hazy sense of space and the uncertain color of the woman's dress – green or blue.

While this backpack looks very much like a parachute pack, the bag opens from the side to reveal a custom made sleeve that can hold a 17" Laptop and a 12" Cintiq.


The Assignment

IND-614B-03 Grad Color Workshop II
Pratt Institute, Spring 2011

Apply knowledge learned about color and light as both source and guide in the development of a personal product that one can either wear or carry.

 Henri Matisse - Woman on a Stool

Henri Matisse - Woman on a Stool

 Abstract Color Breakdown of Matisse's Woman on a Stool

Abstract Color Breakdown of Matisse's Woman on a Stool

The light seems to be coming in from the left, behind the painter. The background walls and floor seem gray and hazy, suggesting a dark, coal-stained room.

Where the light hits the subject's clothing, face, the legs of the stool and the table in the back, color is revealed.

The bird image in the background has what looks like a reflective surface. Coupled with the outline and the haziness of the wall suggests the image might be in some sort of frame, perhaps behind glass.

The black outlining of the subject and objects got lost in the making of the histogram but should play a part in the project; perhaps a good way to introduce piping into the bag.

The bag should be mostly low in color value/lightness, however where color is appropriate, it should be saturated.

  Testing the theory that layering mesh could make a noir patterns that could create the effect the haziness within the painting.

Testing the theory that layering mesh could make a noir patterns that could create the effect the haziness within the painting.

  The first panel created with a blend of colored mesh.

The first panel created with a blend of colored mesh.

Meanwhile the design of the bag needed to be settled. Since I happened to be traveling more than I expected, I needed a bigger backpack that can carry all the things I need to keep working on the road, so the initial sketches of the bag has a "bulby" kind of look with enough space for a 17-inch laptop, a Wacom 12-inch Cintiq tablet screen, and all the accessories required to run them both together. As usual sketching in 2D only got me so far. Three dimensional sketching was required.

  Sketch with a theoretical space required

Sketch with a theoretical space required

  Rendering of the exterior.

Rendering of the exterior.

 The box with the white tape around the edges is a stand in for the space required for the laptop and the drawing tablet.

The box with the white tape around the edges is a stand in for the space required for the laptop and the drawing tablet.

 The "foot print" or rather the area resting on the users back would be quite large.

The "foot print" or rather the area resting on the users back would be quite large.

Once the 3D sketch model was fnished, it was cut apart to make the template for all the fabric pieces that would eventually come together for the bag. Here are a couple of image of the straps coming together.

matisseBackpackStraps-1@2x.jpg
matisseBackpackStraps-2@2x.jpg

The project took over two week with the last few days frantically in front of the sewing machine. Eventually the bag was completed. However, I was not quite happy with the way the bag turned out. Since I never took a soft-good class, the craftsmanship of the bag was really bad and so I decided to make a smaller, more manageable accessories bag that would more accurately represent the colors of the painting.

matisseBackpackReveal-@2x.jpg