A 7-day collaboration with Cynthia Zhou and Sejun Park for the Adobe + Amazon Creative Jam.
Role: UI/UX Designer
Adobe XD, 2020
Design a tablet app to provide a safe way for high school students (age 13+) to #DiscoverDesign.
A charming RPG app that gamifies the discovery process of design through mini-games that introduce students to the foundation of design, a community of budding designers and experienced mentors, and quests that apply newly-learned design skills to the real world.
As recent high school graduates, we had been part of the target audience not long ago. We looked first at our own experiences to find out what drew us to design and looked into what challenges other students around the U.S. face in pursuing it. We wanted to address these two questions:
1. How can we connect beginning designers with physical support?
i.e. access to resources and means with which to learn, practice, and apply design
2. How can we connect beginning designers with interpersonal support?
i.e. an environment that supports learning about the arts as well as ways to meet peers and mentors who are also passionate about design
To address physical challenges when getting started with design, we included an in-app workspace so that beginning students would have access to design software regardless of economic status. As players level up and complete advanced quests, they can earn resources that will help them progress through their design journey. Quests that are commissioned by real-world organizations are also compensated by their respective organizations, so students can focus on creating quality work that pays off — literally!
DesignAir welcomes players into a community of designers by offering opportunities to chat with mentors and exchange feedback with peers. They can set up profiles, browse projects for inspiration, and connect with the next generation of designers in an open, innovative environment.
Of course, we also wanted to push the concept of design thinking as part of the learning experience. Through mini-games that teach accessibility and universal design, quests that benefit local organizations and outreach programs, and weekly challenges that revolve around themes of social justice and community engagement, DesignAir teaches students that design isn’t just art — it’s a way of life.
DesignAir’s visual identity reflects its name: it has the light, whimsical graphics of the floating island in which the game takes place + the clean, minimal aesthetics of modern design.
Our initial wireframe included six main flows: the log-in/sign-up page, the tutorial, mini-games, location-based quests, a feedback corner, and mentor chats.
DesignAir strives to emphasize the philosophy that design is inherently human and compassionate: that design thinking heavily revolves around developing an understanding of the people that products and services are designed for.
DesignAir gamifies the discovery process of design, offering access to educational content as a simple yet intriguing game. From the start, a mentor character warmly welcomes and introduces users to DesignAir’s features, guiding them through their first games. Users can then practice and apply their technical skills in design quests, participate as part of a community with other designers, and connect with mentors.
Through the fusion of these features with a charming, minimal visual identity, DesignAir establishes a welcoming platform for budding designers to discover and explore their potential in the world of design.