Over reading week I have been reading “Sketching User Interactions, The Workbook” to inspire my paper prototyping presentation I am about to start. The book so far has tought me that you must have multiple ideas to get the best design, if there’s only ever one idea, design will never advance.
Technique I learned earlier 10plus10 exercise
Rapidly producing ideas in seconds, literally. It allows you to capture moments of ideas very quickly. Exercise**
This is a skill I feel I could really use in day to day activities to help me develop my visual skills. Recording situations is a key skill of an interaction designer
sampling with cameras
Taking photos of good and bad design and analysing it: this allows you to develop your critical eye as a designer. Taking these images as memory’s lets you think back on them when it comes to designing something your self. To make this even better you could make a sketch book of good and bad design, printing these images out. This would allow me to keep a record and highlight the parts of these designs that caught my eye, for good or bad.
There is a few examples of image tracing in this book where you can trace firstly the image of a content in an interaction sketch, for example a mobile phone (using both paper or photoshop) this will both save time, and allow you to keep a constant through your sketches. This means if a user or client is trying to understand your concepts, you’re giving them a constant, something the can recognise and picture as they move through your design! This is a technique I want to incorporate into my paper prototyping exercise in the AppsForArtist project.
Another good way of using tracing is to trace the outside of hand shapes so you can quickly reproduce an outline to show an interaction, for example a finger sliding a long a screen, it will always be in the same position. This is one that may be best to use with photoshop, so you can save a collection of useable templates to aid any interaction displays as a transparent overlay.
Taking these overlays or tracings you can give your designs a real sense of context by creating hybrid sketches, by layering these drawings over photos and backgrounds. This is something I feel will be heavily involved in my paper prototyping presentation. Even if you take physical drawings, on acetate film or tracing paper and take photos and/or videos of them in context. I feel this gives design a real meaning by creating augmented reality.
Using foam or kappa board allows you to bring these hybrid sketches into tactile prototyping, making a 3D image of say a phone, and giving it a moveable screen all’s you to give a user an even better sense of what the interaction could be.
From here The book goes on and look at how to bring these sketches together in creating visual narratives, so I’ll save that for another day, once I’ve applied a few of these techniques.