Sol Republic PUNK Wireless Speaker

PUNK is a wireless Bluetooth speaker designed to be the smaller, transportable and more durable version of DECK – Sol Republics first wireless speaker. The goal of this collaboration with SOL and Upwell was not only to create a small transportable speaker, but one that followed – visually – very closely in the steps of DECK – the older brother within Sol’s wireless speaker family.

While migrating DECKS existing product language on to the PUNKs stout proportions we also focused on features for clipping, wearing and standing. I looked at mechanisms like spring loaded clips, kickstands and silicone bands. However, we eventually settled on a universal and cost efficient threaded mounting post. PUNKS exterior is molded silicone with raised buttons for volume.



PUNK attached to a pack back via caliber with screw post.



Process Models
As the form became more refined I moved into foam models in order to dial proportions and see surfaces in real 3D. SLA (rapid prototype) models were made of several final directions.




Clip & Attachment Concepts
Several concepts were explored that looked at different ways to add attachment and hanging features like clips and loops, as well as ideas that explored kickstands for sound direction.



Early Concept Sketches
Early concepts focused mainly on attachment ideas.



Belkin Android Smart Dock

The Belkin Smart Dock is designed to be an intelligent bedside phone dock. Outfitted with motion sensors, the smart dock when paired with your phone – and Belkin app – becomes your morning control center. Hit snooze with the waive of a hand, turn on the lights or even start the pot of coffee all from bed.

The two major challenges with this concept were to create an Android dock that would securely accommodate the countless sizes of Android phones  combined with the ability to work seamlessly in portrait or landscape mode. By creating two integrated spring loaded wings we were able to secure and align the phone with the connector when set into the dock. The wings have a range of 1.5″ which is able to accommodate the majority of Android phones on the market. In order to ensure the dock worked in landscape mode as well as portrait we rigorously refined and tested the balance between weight distribution, size/shape of surface area and material selection. It had to be stable in two completely different positions and work as a one handed operation when engaging the phones touch screen.


Upwell Design Studio belkin prototypes

Dock prototypes
I worked heavily with hand made foam models, it was the quickest way to visualize early concept sketches.


Belkin protoype testing, upwell design

Weight studies
In order to view and interact with the phone in landscape or portrait mode – without having the dock move all over – there had to be a precise distribution of weight in very specific locations. This is an example of the testing that was done in the later ID phases.



Upwell Design Work Parle ipad case keyboard

Parle Dock-it iPad Case

The Dock-it  iPad case is designed with the serious road warrior in mind looking to take full advantage of the high-end specs on new iPads. Big bulky laptops are no longer needed to be efficient, however a keyboard always helps. Parles Pro Dock-it is has a full keyboard with a great typing stance. Dock-it also takes advantage of the iPads touch screen by allowing it to be flipped 180° and used as a traditional tablet, while still protected within the case.


Upwell Parle Dock-it iPad case

Design Revision The Dock-it is loaded with moving parts which made it quite a design challenge. It is the transformer of iPad cases. The design of this case went through two major engineering revisions.  The first design direction was based on earlier aspirational engineering studies. The second design direction was more conservative, incorporating a sturdy exterior metal frame and shifting focus on more robust parts in order to ensure iPad protection and confidently moving actions.


 “It is obvious that the engineers at Parle Innovation paid attention to details”   –


Sol Republic Pro Cables

The Pro Cable is an all in one cable that comes with a 1/4″ and 1/8″ audio connector to work with any type of audio device – from in flight iPod listening to a Friday night DJ set – it’s the only cable you’ll ever need. We wanted to create a versatile cable that would work with professional DJ equipment as well as any standard audio equipment – including your phone.


I worked closely with the Sol Republic design team focusing on finding an integrated solution that would store the 1/4″ connector when not in use. We designed a metal collar mount solution with screw post to ensure it would never get lost and also stay out of the way when it wasn’t needed – this was an issue with most existing high-end cables. The Pro Cables like all Sol Republic audio equipment uses premium materials and sweats even the smallest details.


Upwell Design Sol Republic Pro Cables concepts

Early Cable Concepts
I looked at many variations of how we could attach the 1/4″ connector when not in use; this was just one front runner.



 “Pro cables are another example of a well-made product that exemplifies what Sol Republic is and continues to represent.”

Luminati Customer Review

Upwell Design Work Pentagram Dell Precision

Dell Precision M6400

While at Pentagram Dell had asked us to look at exploring a new design language using the Precision Mobile Workstation as the platform. The new Precision language stresses a clear delineation between exterior and interior. The contrast in materials and colors reinforces the roles of each surface. The clean exterior metal surface states protection and durability for the mindful, function driven interior. Well laid out ports and a reduction of visual clutter make getting work done the only focus.

Upwell Dell Pentagram Precision renderings

Concept Renderings
These were early concept renderings that show: an integrated hinge, LCD screen on cover to display relevant info and the DELL logo placed off center and without their traditional plastic circle badge. (a very big deal from a branding point of view).


“Despite being a workstation model, it doesn’t compromise on looks. Its straight lines are elegant, and the array of ports and slots along the edges is logical and spaced nicely for easy access.”   –   PCworld

Upwell Design work HP Teague printer langauge

HP Pro Printer Line

Teague was asked by HP to define a new printer design language that could be spread across their entire line of printers – from large format color ink jet printers to small desktop laser printers.

Using a well prepared style guide I was tasked with the job of designing two very different size printers within this new line of printers. The challenge when implementing a new design language on different size products – with different function features – is that design guidelines don’t always translate well from one product to another.  Design liberties were taken when a newly defined style element clashed with a functional one.  Reinterpreting the new language so that it still kept the design intent intact without sacrificing function was a reoccurring challenge.

Upwell industrial design Teague HP

Top Detail Renderings

These top views illustrate how different the two printers were, and how the language translates from a small laser jet printer to a large color inkjet that also as a copier feature.


Upwell Design Pentagram Dell Latitude

Dell Latitude Notebook

While at Pentagram we were asked by Dell to redefine the design language for the entire line of Latitude E-Series Notebooks.  The Latitude is mainly used as a portable enterprise notebook. The current Latitude notebooks lacked focus – they were a visual mess that looked more like a low end consumer notebook  than a solid, reliable business laptop.


The new Latitude design language, as seen on the Latitude E6400, redefines the idea that a portable enterprise PC has to look and feel like a clunky corporate notebook. The Latitude language reinforces strength and durability. The substantial hinge owns the back end of the notebook – it’s not small, nor is it hidden – part of its language revolves around its strength. The screen bezel and keyboard deck is clean and organized, all visual clutter has been removed to reduce unnecessary distractions. Durable magnesium finishes and parts combined with clean straight lines only helps to reinforce the all-business nature of the new design language.


“The new E series is a stark departure from the familiar Latitude look. The result is a much more modern feel, and it fits in with the usage model of a work laptop being your main machine and frequently traveling from home to office. The E6400 still has a professional look but can also fit in with high-end designer consumer laptops.”
– Dan Ackerman

Industrial design studio renderings for dell

Early Latitude concept rendering
This is a rendering we did early in to the process to illustrate the visual hierarchy of the hinge.



Concept sketches, upwell design studio


Concept sketches
Early sketches show the different hinge concepts that were explored.