When young people “into art” look toward their future careers, they often see few options. See Why Studios, a new endeavor of industrial designer Tom Weis, aims to introduce a whole range of possibilities this summer by introducing local teens to the growing field of industrial design.

Weis has been part of the city’s creative community for a few years; last November, he got international notice when the infant incubator he helped design — by, among other things, taking apart a Toyota truck in his South End driveway — landed in Time Magazine’s Top 50 Inventions and was featured in the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum’s 2010 Triennial (Michael Hahn, a Georges Valley High School grad, also was a team member).

That project was part of Weis’ master’s degree in industrial design from the Rhode Island School of Design; this fall, he will return to RISD to teach an ID course. Between then and now, however, he is partnering with former RISD classmate Shoham Arad to run a series of design workshops for teens in grades 8 through 12. Different workshops will be offered weekdays, mornings and afternoons, from June 20 through Aug. 26. Most workshops will run one week, although the product design option will run two. All will focus on the brainstorming, collaborative, hands-on process that makes design such fertile ground for creative people in a range of disciplines.

“Everything is designed,” said Weis. From systems to objects, ID’s potential and influence is literally everywhere one looks.

“Most people think design is coming up with that One Big Idea, when really it’s about coming up with 140 ideas,” said Arad who, before coming to Maine, was the program and innovation collaborator at Syracuse University’s COLAB (Collaboration Laboratory), is an experimental, groundbreaking, multidisciplinary design-based education program.

“The basic thing about design is to generate ideas and then put them through a critical thinking process,” said Weis.

That process is a rigorous, step-by-step approach that can be used in many areas of life, added Arad. The See Why partners, both of whom have backgrounds in the fine arts, describe themselves as fully engaged in the larger design community through a vast network of relevant media outlets, manufacturers and artists and designers actively creating meaningful work in the world. That “meaningful” is what gives ID its distinctive appeal to many creative people, especially those drawn to humanitarian, environmental and socially aware endeavors.

“I wanted to make things, but I wanted to do functional objects, to create work for people to use every day,” said Arad, whose bachelor of fine arts degree focused on ceramics; she earned a master’s in ID at RISD.

Weis felt a similar pull, coming to RISD for a master in ID after 10 years of professional work as a wooden boatbuilder, cabinetmaker and practicing artist. At grad school, he focused on design in the areas of social and environmental concerns.

“I love making art, but I didn’t like having to justify everything as a fine art student,” he said.

Both See Why partners have worked with young people in nonprofit programs, Weis working with immigrant teens in Providence, R.I., and, more recently, with the Farnsworth Art Museum’s Julia’s Gallery for Young Artists; and Arad as executive director of the Boston-based KidsArts. She currently is creator and managing editor of a collaborative feminist blog called Girls Gone Wild Dot Me. The summer design workshops are not a nonprofit endeavor, but will partner with several nonprofits.

“We want to be as available as possible to everyone, so people should come talk to us,” Arad said.

An opportunity to do that will take place Sunday, May 22 from 1 to 4 p.m. at See Why Studios, 68 Crescent St. — the South End corner storefront that most recently housed Trillium Soaps, a legacy that lingers sweetly in the air.

“We want students to come to a professional design studio and see how we work,” said Weis.

The See Why summer workshops will apply industrial design process principals to a range of projects including (skateboard) longboard decks, fashion, stop-motion animation and product development. While all the workshops will explore the design process, some will focus on particular elements such as creating and communicating narratives and using social media.

“The narratives — storytelling — is an important part of the process, because designers often are coming up with things that have never existed before,” said Arad, whose background includes being a journalist and producer for MTV’s Emmy Award-winning “Choose or Lose” campaign.

Local designers who will lend their expertise to the summer workshops include Beth Bowley and Jin Lawrence of Rockland’s fourTwelve. Taking advantage of the Midcoast’s renowned summer beauty, Weis and Arad also are pulling a number of former classmates and colleagues to the Midcoast from around the country and beyond. They include master craftsmen/designers Marco Bonometti, Brendan Ravenhill, filmmaker Liz Nord, muralist Esteban Del Valle, sustainable designer Sarah Sandman, fashion designer Becky Birholz and artist/designer Emily Rothschild.

Working with them all will be See Why summer intern Marty Laurita who, after growing up in the Camden area, getting a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and spending a few years in Hollywood, will be starting graduate ID studies at RISD in January. Laurita is an example of a creative person who, having tested the waters of a variety of disciplines, is drawn to industrial design. The See Why summer workshops aim at helping more people consider this growing field.

“Every step in design in a choice, making particular choices along the way. We want to make the world better, not just be about consumerism. That’s the heart of the design process,” said Arad.

For more information about See Why Studios’ summer design workshops, contact Weis at tweis74@gmail.com or 542-7401. The website, due to go live soon, will be see-why.org.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email to dernest@villagesoup.com.