Kaneda’s Bike 3.0: Christoph Proessler
Kaneda’s bike 3.0 is an electric motorbike concept based on the iconic vehicle from the movie, ‘Akira’. The project was born during Christoph‘s long commutes to and from work, plus the fact that he had just picked up poly-modeling after a decade of neglect. He was keen on building a hard-surface model in Blender, and one of those typical meeting doodles paved the way for the vehicle. After spending many painful hours in Alias, he felt that Blender would allow him to achieve a similar surface quality for visualization purposes, but with a more intuitive, and most importantly, a simpler way of modeling that brings a warmer, more natural feel to the final design.
Just as the classic vehicle, the main design of Kaneda’s Bike 3.0 is defined by two interlocking volumes that are connected by a central motor block. The diagonal cuts give the motorbike a relaxed, yet dynamic expression. The low seat, with its iconic high backrest, directly transitions into the rear suspension block and the encapsulated rear wheel with its electromagnetic propulsion engine. A ripple pattern stretches out from the glowing center of the wheel, to underline the infinite thrust of the motor.
As electric motorbikes typically lack a loud engine noise or visible mechanical complexity, Christoph has added these design cues to trigger new emotional connections to the vehicle. On the opposite end of the vehicle, a long, covered front fork stretches out from the handlebar to the large front wheel, which becomes a canvas for the iconic stickers that are so crucial to the feeling of the original design. However, rather than having them scattered all over the vehicle, he decided to give them a more defined space.
Once the modeling was finished, Christoph moved on to rendering the vehicle in Keyshot, where he spent equal amounts of time setting up the scene, tuning materials, and applying stickers. As he find it rather limiting and complex to apply shut lines in Blender, he decided early on to apply material splits by projecting lines as labels in Keyshot. This allows for more flexibility during the modeling process, and also comes with its own aesthetic.
Christoph has always been fascinated by Japanese culture, its simple traditional architecture, the carefully curated Zen gardens, and the purity of products created by contemporary design studios such as Nendo. His goal was to reflect all these influences in my interpretation of the Akira bike, in order to achieve a pure and bold, yet light aesthetic, that maintains the main proportions and design cues of the original vehicle.
Christoph Proessler has an extensive background in both transportation and product design. After graduating from Pforzheim University where he studied transportation design, he spent 4 years as an exterior designer at Land Rover and subsequently moved to London to work at For people, a multidisciplinary design consultancy to practice automotive and industrial design. Christoph has always had a penchant for the world of entertainment design; he particularly enjoys exploring the boundaries of future travel, where reality and sci-fi merge into new and exciting forms of transport. You can follow more of his work on his Website.