Design Systems Thinking Post 4

For this week we are reading an article called Visual Research: An Introduction to Research Methodologies in Graphic Design, by Ian Noble and Russel Bestley. We are looking Visual Research, and more specifically we are looking at multiple ares such as: methods (ways of thinking), the field of study (where will the work be situated and what is the function?), The project focus (what will the specific context and function of the work be within the wider field of study already defined?), The research methodology (how will the designer go about researching and developing the project in response to the context) etc.

One of the parts that really stood out to me from these areas is talking about how culture always affects us in some ways. I have never thought of this before, but I can see how it does. Being someone who now has been living in many different cultures, I view things I read differently. Things I have experienced as a child will give me some associations with certain subjects and certain words, while for someone else those associations can be completely different and give completely different feelings and thoughts. It is therefore important to look at the context in which are planning on create design for, and to do research about what is already there and what actually works for different audiences.

When looking at the research methodology it is also stands out to me how one needs to create their own set of rules in how to engage in a project and how the research are executed. By planning out the research and ones intentions it gives a more organized setting which gives a higher chance to succeed. It makes it easier to meet deadlines, to have a more accurate research and I would image it is easier to be sure that one covers multiple ways of researching and multiple ways in measuring.


Here is an image that are looking at the context of researching. We can see how it is not only important to look at the local culture, but also what is effective, what are consequences and so forth.

Noble, Ian, and Russell Bestley. Visual Research: An Introduction to Research Methodologies in Graphic Design. Lausanne: AVA, 2005. Print.
Own Elaboration. Map of context research. Digital image. Scielo Portugal. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Apr. 2017. <;


Design Systems Thinking Post 3

This week we are looking at Humand-centered design through the website Human-Centered design has three parts- Inspiration, ideation and implementation. In the inspiration part one you are learning from the people you design for, and you are putting yourself in their lives to understand their needs. In the ideation part you are taking what you learned in the inspiration part and makes sense of it, looking at opportunities for design and you start to prototype possible solutions. In the last part, implementation you make the solution happen and bring it to the market. Since you have been through multiple parts, starting with looking at the lives of the people you design for and their needs, you have a better chance of being successful.

After looking through the mindset nav on the site I found some interesting thoughts on Human-centered design. Patrice Martin talked about how ambiguity is scary and often avoided, but how in design it should be embraced and explored. That as designers we often want to know the answer all the time, but that not knowing helps us have more creativity and gives us more opportunities ( I know myself that I don’t enjoy not knowing, and I want to always have control and have answers. I have a curious mind and often try to not have ambiguity. However I sometimes need that ambiguity in my life, and I can understand how it is helpful and creates more creativity.

Another interesting mindset was Emi Kolawole talking about empathy. How we need to not exist in our own life when designing for others.  We need to embrace empathy and step in to someone else’s shoes, to understand the problem and through that find a solution ( This to me makes a lot of sense, for if we are working on a problem we need to fully understand it, so that we don’t create assumptions about it and design a solution we think is helpful, but in reality might not be. This could therefore be avoided more easily through empathy.

Lastly I looked at the different methods in how to use human-centered design, and then moved on to the different case studies.

In this graph we can see how it starts with Empathy before defining problem, and then it moves on to ide, prototype and test. It also goes back to Empathy, showing how the process needs to be back and forth and not always one linear process.

This shows the three parts in a graph, again showing how there is not necessarily one straight linear process.

IDEO. “What Is Human-Centered Design?” Design Kit. IDEO, n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2017.
IDEO. Hdc-process.jpg. Digital image. Sidlaurea, n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2017.
Process of empathy to test. Digital image. Pinterest., n.d. Web. 19        Apr. 2017. <;.

Design Systems Thinking Post 2

Case Study: Be Careful What You Cut

For the first case Study I am looking at one called “Be careful what you cut” which was created by Fallon. Their concern in this study is relevant for social goods in that they are looking at the future of children and how they affect the society in a whole, as well as how the children needs help. As for this case study the Design system thinking is looking at how the children will affect the future in terms of cost as well as making people be aware of facts. This involves research and looking at statistics etc. The human centered design focuses on how the children feels and will feel, how they personally are affected in society. This involves showing the audience a contrast between the child and their potential future, bringing in emotions and a fast respons.
The designers used a very bold style in this case study, really focusing on bringing out the emotions in order to reach the audience. This was done with images and contrasting something angel like and innocent with something often seen as a problem and darker. The style in the images are intentional and brings out emotions, and it does so immediately. The photography and design is used as social activism in showing how the politics now can affect the next generation and that a persons future starts early, and decision matters even before they grow up. I personally really enjoyed this case study. It was eye catching and made me stop and think, and being someone who have worked with children it made me relate and consider what was shown/said.

Case Study: Make Congress Work!


For the second case study I am looking at one called “Make congress work” by Maloney & Fox. This one is focusing on bringing information to the congress and are relevant for social good in the long run, being that the congress can affect the whole society. Their strategy was to create a booklet that draws attention so that people will stop and look, and therefore read information. I think that the design system thinking in this case study is the information that needs to be reach and what needs to be said. Looking at the problem that needs to be conveyed and how to do so. It would be the big informational sections and how to best convey the right info. The human design thinking could be the look of the booklet in terms of color and what emotions it brings. How to make the audience stop and look, how they feel when looking at it. By making it bolder and different, people can stop and think more deeper.
The booklet differ from other congress booklet by using a lot more typography, hierarchy and colors. This makes it stand out, and therefore creates the desired outcome. This in turn brings awareness to how communication works, and could work, in the congress which in turns brings a better government and therefore a better society.
I think this is a fun approach, and really makes people look twice. Information in politics are often not too interesting and hard to read, so it would be more effective to make it look appealing and bring focus.

Fallon. “Case Study: Be Careful What You Cut.” AIGA | the Professional Association for Design. AIGA, 18 Mar. 2013. Web. 12 Apr. 2017.
Fallon. Digital image. AIGA, 18 Mar. 2013. Web. 12 Apr. 2017. <;.
Maloney & Fox. “Case Study: Make Congress Work!” AIGA | the Professional Association for Design. AIGA, 04 Oct. 2012. Web. 12 Apr. 2017.
Maloney & Fox. Digital image. AIGA, 04 Oct. 2012. Web. 12 Apr. 2017. <–case-study–make-congress-work&gt;.

Design Systems Thinking Post 1

For our first blog post in our capstone class we are looking at the article System thinking and Design thinking: Complimentary Approaches, written by Grace Mugdaza, and the article Design Thinking for Social Innovation by Tim Brown and Jocelyn Wyatt. Looking at these we can understand more about the Design System, how concept of design has been used before in System thinking, but how the new design system thinking is more than that. Design thinking “generally refers to applying a designer’s sensibility and methods to problem-solving no matter what the problem is” (System thinking and Design thinking: Complimentary Approaches), rather than just being a problem solving or planning tool. Design thinking does have many characteristics from system thinking, being that people realized that in order to function well, design thinking needed some system thinking within it. The two thinking methods works well together and as a designer, when looking at a problem, integrating the design thinking with system thinking is helpful and gives a bigger chance of being successful. It helps looking at the whole problem, and the relationships, before looking at ways to solve. When knowing the whole problem as a base, one can use Design thinking to look at the more human parts, to deep into the problem and find a solution knowing and understanding the problem better. In understanding the problem from the “real” perspective. By using both sides one can see both parts, both perspectives and therefore look at multiple ways to solve the problem while really knowing what is needed to be solved and why.

For me, in this course, I would benefit in using this thinking to explore more than just my own experiences and actually deep deeper in what would be helpful and why. By first looking at the main problem, finding research about it and seeing all parts of it from a systematic thinking, I can later deep in to what it feels like, what helps the people and looking at the way it affects someones life. By talking to people affected and seeing their perspective. This will help me knowing more than just one part, and it will help me understand what really is needed to solve the problem and how to start looking for a problem solving.

This image shows an example of using the process. Though it is in german, we can see how it first talks about thinking and understanding the main problem, then looking at the problem to then understanding the problem. After that, its about finding solution, prototyping and then test it.

Innoshot. “Design Thinking versus Creative Problem Solving.” Pinterest. N.p., 03 Mar. 2016. Web. 05 Apr. 2017.
Mugadza, Grace. “Systems Thinking and Design Thinking: Complimentary Approaches?” Systems Thinking World Journal RSS. Systems Thinking World Journal RSS, n.d. Web. 05 Apr. 2017.
Searle, John R. “The Social Construction of Reality.” Driving Desired Futures (n.d.): n. pag. Stanford Graduate School, 2010. Web. 5 Apr. 2017.