This week, YDA 1 was all about digital design — Any design absorbed or engaged with through a digital interface, such as a screen, computer, or appliance.
The day started off with a free form drawing and writing exercise to get the creativity flowing. Students drew a big circle on a sheet of paper and filled it in with doodles about how they were feeling.
Continuing to exercise the sketching skills we have been working on each week, the class split into teams and played a game of pictionary as an icebreaker.
After the icebreaker we recapped what we had learned about communication design last week. We talked about the history of visual communication, the principles and then revisited the campaign posters we designed for our community challenge.
Following the recap it was time to dive into this week’s topic; Digital Design. Before revealing a formal definition, students shared their perceptions of what digital design was, offering spot on examples like ‘the design of apps’.
Isabel, walked through a brief history of digital design, starting with Disney’s first animation “Snow White & The Seven Dwarves (1937)” and ending with the virtual assistants like Siri (2011).
The teaching team spent some time sharing examples of four major types of digital design.
- Robby discussed animation; sharing examples of how designers who use animation work on everything from animations for movies to delightful little interactions in the apps we use everyday.
- Isabel discussed video game design; walking the class through all the design roles that come together to make their favorite game, including roles that surprised students such as Sound Design.
- Chris E. discussed Software/App/Web design; sharing examples of apps and websites and discussing the importance of designing technology that helps people rather than hinders them.
- Chris G discussed emerging technologies of Augmented Reality(AR) and Virtual Reality(VR), sharing some of the interesting considerations designers have when designing in virtual spaces.
The seminar ended with an introduction to the four mains steps of the design process — Observation, Ideation, Prototyping & Testing.
For the seminar activity students were tasked with designing a photography app for themselves. We started with brief tutorial from Chris E. on ‘wireframe’ drawing method that digital designers use to quickly sketch ideas for app screens. The class then set to work sketching out screens for their ideal photography app.
After lunch the class had an opportunity to put the full design process into practice through their Community Challenge — How might we improve the commute to school so that students start their day off right? Last week each group solved this challenge by designing poster campaigns. This week we designed apps!
- Observation — Students started by creating ‘personas’ to help us understand who they were designing for. They fleshed out details about the persona’s commute to school and the various problems that arose in relation to that commute.
- Ideation — Students then individually brainstormed ideas and features to include in their apps.
- Prototyping — Evaluating the ideas and pulling together the ones that best addressed the “persona’s” problem, students once again practiced their ‘wireframe’ sketching skills by designing a prototype app.
- Testing — Finally, it was time to put the prototypes in front of other people and learn. Each group laid out the screens they had designed and walked the rest of the groups through their ‘user journey’, tapping from one screen to the next.
Next week, we’ll be learning about Spatial Design! This includes urban design, landscape design, architecture, interior design and more!