The several loops characterizing the design process used to slow down the development of new projects. Since the 70s, the design process has changed due to the new technologies and tools related to Computer-Aided Design software and Virtual Reality applications that make almost the whole process digital. However, the concept phase of the design process is still based on traditional approaches, while digital tools are poor exploited. In this phase, designers need tools that allow them to rapidly save and freeze their ideas, such as sketching on paper, which is not integrated in the digital-based process.
The paper presents a new gestural interface to give designers more support by introducing an effective device for 3D modelling to improve and speed up the conceptual design process. We designed a set of gestures to allow people from different background to 3D model their ideas in a natural way. A testing session with 17 participants allowed us to verify if the proposed interaction was intuitive or not. At the end of the tests, all participants succeeded in the 3D modelling of a simple shape (a column) by only using air gestures in a relatively short amount of time exactly how they expected it to be built, confirming the proposed interaction.