Ford designers create a snowman extravaganza

(December 25, 2014) DEARBORN, Mich. — The innovative minds behind some of the world’s most iconic vehicles must work within the constraints of rules and regulations, which heightens the challenge for the designer, yet never quashes the creative spirit reflected in the final product. As a team-building exercise, the U.S. design teams at Ford were given unbridled freedom for once to create an icon of winter — the snowman.

In November, the teams kicked off the holiday season with a snowman-design challenge. Nine teams were given three pieces of white Styrofoam, and instructed to work together, document the process, and have fun.

The results are sure to delight their new owners all winter long. Three of the Ford snowmen will be delivered this month to two Michigan orphanages and a senior citizens home. The remaining six will be housed at Ford design studios.

Perfectly sculpted and painted, with some of the creations lit from within and wrapped in a suede-like fabric, each snowman is thoughtfully designed to capture the strengths of its team.

From Ford’s color and materials studio came a snowman featuring paint domes as vest, twigs textured with sparkling crystals for arms, and a basket-weave top hat.

Studio 2000X, the team behind most Ford vehicle animations, designed a punker snowman with technology features such as camera-lens eyes.

The Ford team responsible for interiors presented a sled-bound trio of snowmen, complete with tablet guiding the way.

And several teams charged with developing vehicle prototypes debuted snowmen with detailed stitching, polished surfaces and refined curves.

Each one of these nine Ford snowmen reflects the spirit of the holiday season. Even when inspired by a heavy-metal band with wildly painted faces.