Assignment 1: A Walkthrough

And thus I embarked on Assignment 1. When I first loaded the website, I could’ve sworn it was in an utter MESS. There was so much data to begin with (not to mention the fact that it was already in a visualisation in itself) and we had to pull out certain data to make an infographic.

It had to be a confirmative analysis (confirm or infirm hypothesis or structural relationships between data) piece of work and needed to be time-based.

With this in mind, I gobbled up all the data and let it sit inside my head over a few days, turning it about mentally and finally came up with a linear, “timeline”-esque infographic which was only in black and white. It took me approximately 5.5 hours in illustrator to create draft number one.


Draft 1

Allow me to explain:

  1. I only drew data from the timeframe of 1950 to 1974 (as stated in the infographic)
  2. I wanted to make it visually comparable with respect to the previous, hence the small column per milestone
  3. I added descriptive text to each column, to name and elaborate on each element
  4. Grey boxes were added to group certain time-periods to vaguely classify and clump some of them together
  5. Some information (or lack of complete data) was omitted
  6. Colour was left as black and white to prevent any elements from receiving undue focus or recognition but in the end it turned out like a huge chunk of data (i.e. poor data-ink ratio)

As I proceeded to draft number two, based on suggestions by my classmates and my tutor, I decided to add colour to the entire chart and rearrange some graphical elements.


Draft 2 (with colour)

  1. Computer was tilted to create a “pop-up” effect with description added
  2. Desaturated colours were used to group the “sub-eras”. I have my doubts about the data-ink ratio now?
  3. An information textbox was added to show why is this data significant & the story it is supposed to tell
  4. Weird professor vector was added to make the infographic seem a little more playful and to cater to a larger audience
  5. All blurry JPEG images used were re-vectored and coloured to give a consistent aesthetic to the piece

Still thinking it needed refinement, I proceeded to make draft number three.


Draft 3

Draft 3 seemed like it now had too many colours and the user would get confused with what to see and why it is relevant, therefore Draft 4 is my final piece.


Draft 4 (Final)

I asked myself what would be negligible if removed, and the computer was taken out. The circles were shrunk a little and opacity reduced (Thanks, Jaime!) to give some legible white space around and the title was reworked to make it less ostentatious, since there were already so many darn shapes around.

Also, something I hadn’t elaborated was about the last column, 3-D Visualisations. I intentionally made it extend out of the defined space to give the visual effect of 3-Dimensions, i.e. occlusion to show the foreground depth of the idea being conveyed.

Also, British spelling of “visualisation” because WE’RE BRITISH AND HAVE BRITISH COLONIAL MASTERS. TAKE THAT AMURECA


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