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Time Machine

Last Updated: October 25, 2020 • 2 min read

 Inspired by my wormhole lamp design, I continued to explore the motif and tie it into an hourglass.

This timepiece is meant to encourage us to live in the moment. I often feel I get swept up in the daily grind of career goals, and that I sometimes care too much about things that don’t matter in the grand scheme. The hourglass allows us to visualize the passing of time in a simple, elegant way. My contribution to this concept is the void that runs through the center of the hourglass.


I designed a product to compliment my wormhole lamp. The concept of visualizing a wormhole and its relevance to time made designing an hourglass a no-brainer. I admire Marc Newson’s hourglass design and want to credit his design as a seed of inspiration. 


The grains flow around the center. Hence, the grains represent the passing of time. When you look down the center of the hourglass, you see there are no grains. This carries different meanings depending on the viewer. To me, it represents clarity. Therefore, the grains remind me that everything shall pass, good and bad. The center represents clarity, and a cosmic timescale. There were things before me and there will be things after me. It forces me to challenge my own beliefs and to find comfort in my mortality.


I quickly modeled the glass in Fusion 360. I used Houdini to simulate the grains. This turned out to be a much bigger challenge than expected due to how many particles there were. Additionally, this was my first time using Houdini for a design. I converted the particles to geometry and export them in order to render them in KeyShot. This was an incredibly heavy process that required quite a bit of troubleshooting an patience.



This is a bespoke piece to be produced in a small quantity. Therefore, it’s a solid glass structure filled with small stainless steel beads. I’ve no clue if this can be made, but if someone thinks it’s possible and wants to try and prototype one (or more) please email me. Find my contact info on my website.


CAD – Fusion 360

Simulation – Houdini

Rendering – KeyShot

Post – Photoshop

Will Gibbons
Will Gibbons is an industrial designer-turned rendering specialist. He's trained and worked with some of today's most recognizable brands and now is focused on creating the best product visualization content on the internet.
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