And now, the end is near...
This semester was full of enlightenment and change, both in direction and deliverables. My contract evolved after its first submission due to a significant audience change. Originally, LifeMap was focused on the child's journey through their eyes, supported by their foster and biological parents. I initially chose a tree to depict unity of many branches (people) in a child's life. The color palette consisted of five colors and the typefaces were more modern. My original deliverables were a website and packaging, a container to store memory making tools and artifacts. I was working with an illustrator to create age specific illustrations that would decorate my packaging. After an in-depth conversation with my instructor, he pinpointed the problem to my constant art direction dilemma: I had the wrong audience. I immediately sought out help from the Online Director and other professors on how to go about 'saving' my project.
I practically began from scratch, from redoing my logo and brand identity to shifting my art direction from illustration based to photography. I choose a kite for my logo because it depicts the many ups-and-downs of life, as well as the constant traveling of foster children. My style is now heavily photography based, with duotones of my color palette. My typeface is more rounded and is paired with a common typeface. My audience shifted to foster parents who can record memories of ages infant to middle school. I switched the emphasis from packaging with memory making tools and artifacts to a JourneyBook for (4) stages of life accompanied by packaging. Lastly, we concluded that a prototype website would work better for my concept than a live website, thus changing the overall point value.
This semester I started on completing 100% of my website and 50% of my packaging. After my deliverables changed, I decided to complete my first deliverable this semester and left the JourneyBook for my next thesis class. According to my contract, I need to have a Desktop Advance prototype completed, which consists of 17 pages, a tutorial video, and mobile site as well (NOT AN APP). I completed a total of 29 desktop website pages, along with several overlay pages (10). My original layout consisted of only four tabs but the parallax aspect taught me six navigation tabs were better. As for my mobile website, I have a total of 25 pages so far. I exceeded the amount of pages because the design called for it; there was too much information that needed to be presented that could not live in the original page count. Through my user testing, I also added more pages (such as to Events) because my audience expressed much interest in it. I also complete one of the packaging (duffle bag) components for my second deliverable.
During the summer (and fall break since I don't have Thesis 3 until Spring 2018), I plan on researching inspirations and competitions for my next deliverable, the JourneyBook. This will consist of First Baby books, scrapbooking layouts, time periods between major events in the different age groups, etc. I will continue to expand the website, such as adding screens to create reminders for foster parents (i.e. dance recital on xx/xx). I will also continue to contact packing companies who could help me create a prototype for my duffle bag.
Unfortunately I do not have the video (user journey) completed. I was suggested that I do a promo video instead, rather than a tutorial video. I am now wondering where to put the tutorial video so the users can refer back to them when they are new or forget certain UX|UI actions. Then again, is it needed? And if so, does that suggest that my UX|UI is not successful? These are the questions I ponder.
On the bright side, here's my mobile site prototype: https://projects.invisionapp.com/share/9PBSYZVSY#/screens