Saturday, 26 December 2009
Thursday, 3 December 2009
I previously wrote about my experience in London on Black Friday last week and how it was littered with money machines. Now on this news this evening was the talk of buses in London and how they are the 'ones' littering Oxford Street. It was said that the average us has only 10 travellers riding, 1/3 of buses travelling along Britain's busiest shopping street have only 5 people on them! This is considering that 367 pass Oxford Circus every hour! (curtosy of BBC news).
Wednesday, 2 December 2009
Tuesday, 1 December 2009
Assignment 4 -
Comparing two sources, a journal and book, to show how emotion and behaviour affects what we design, how we design and how the consumer reacts to the product.
Emotion and behaviour are fundamentally important to the designer, the design itself and the relationship between the consumer and product. Investigating ‘Emotional Design’ by Donald A. Norman has proven how our brain and personality affect how we design and react to it. Also a journal article ‘Emotions by Design: A Consumer Perspective’ written by Ritundra Chitturi which questions the emotions evoked in consumers when buy and use a product. Although both sources have similar attitudes to our emotional design experience, ‘Emotional Design’ provides more broad research from different sources and the journal proves good evidence and experiments to form a valid conclusion.
Donald A. Norman is a cognitive scientist and psychologist who teaches at North-western University. He has written many books on the design of products and consumers reactions including ‘The Design of Everyday Things’ and “Emotional Design’ which question two opposite concepts important to a designer – functionality and emotion.
Norman includes many evidence-based sources to prove the point of the importance of emotion to design from an unbiased perspective. He does not show sensitivity to his point as he states he only began to investigate emotional design after studying functionality of design previously, but now beginning to question that there is more. Interestingly he doesn’t state which he claims to be more important – function or emotion, so enables the reader to make his/her own opinion. This concludes his concept that emotion is a worthy goal of design.
Advancing on Norman’s understanding of emotion and design is the ideas of Ravindra Chitturi who wrote an article for the Journal of Design called ‘Emotions by Design: A Consumer Perspective’. This is good reading for design principals as it explains how different products, the usability of them and how it can evoke positive or negative emotions in the consumer. The main concepts of this article are that there are two kinds of benefit we buy for – hedonic benefits which is buying for luxury and the opposite which she calls utilitarian benefits which focuses on what we believe to be necessities or needs (Dhar and Wertenbroch, 2000) and (Okada, 2005). She goes into each in depth however does not question the point that some products are bought for both or that some are designed to appeal to both parts of our brain. Neither is there any research into products we do not buy but given as gifts or we inherit, find etc. The source is easily followed by the reader because it shows valuable research and explains clearly experiments she conducts to prove her argument.
Chitturi argues the success of a product depends on the designers interest in what she calls the ‘prevention or promotion goals’ (Chitturi et al, 2007). Promotional goals are described as ‘looking cool’ or ‘being sophisticated’ (Higgins, 1997, 2001) and ‘prevention goals’ as ‘being responsible’. She suggests that purchasing a product you believe you need is a ‘prevention goal’ that means if it works well it will prevent us experience negative emotion. Likewise if a product is bought as a luxury and meets expectations it will have succeeded its goal of promotion as we experience feelings of joy that we will share with others. This ultimately results in the success of a design. It also suggests that a product that concentrates on having hedonic benefits has more chance of succeeding than a utilitarian product because we are more likely to complain about a product we expect to be functional. Thus creates a negative opinion of the design through word of mouth etc. This, however, also means prevention goals are more important to the designer (Kivetz & Simonson, 2002). The affect this has on emotion and design is that what and why we buy will result in the relationship we have with the product itself. ‘Why We Buy’ by Palo Underhill goes further into this idea which I intend to research.
Although the paper is not very broad, for example looking into culture or specific peoples needs, it makes good research into emotional consumerism towards design as it has critical evidence from a series of psychologists and designers and provides interesting findings proving the argument Chitturi is putting across proving emotion and cognitive behaviour should be crucial when designers begin the design process and throughout to keep good customer loyalty which fundamentally a successful design.
Another similarity is that the sources agree at our frustration when something that is meant to be functional doesn’t work and we blame the product itself, not the designer (Reeves & Nass, 1996). The journal article goes further by explaining the types of emotion we feel and express, which can often result in complaints and negative word of mouth epidemics. These are all contributing factors to why the consumer buys certain products weather it be for the attractiveness or the functionality or simply because it reminds you of something. Both sources by Norman and Chitturi bounce off one another with similar developing ideas and valid research to come to the conclusion that for whatever reason, emotion is vital to the design process and the relationship it develops with the consumer.
Chitturi, R. (2009). “Emotion and Design: A Consumer Perspective”, International Journal of Design, 3(2), 7-17.
Desmet, P, Van Erp, J, Karlsson, M. (2008). Design and Emotion Moves, Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
Graying, A. C. (2002). The Meaning of Things, Pheonix: New Ed edition
Fogg, P. J. (2009). “The New Rules of Perusasion”. RSA Journal, 155 (5538), 24-29
Norman, D. (2002). Design of Everyday Things, New York: Basic Books
Norman, D. (2004). Emotional Design, New York: Basic Books.
Piccadilly Circus - London.
What do these six places have in common (apart from being in central London)? Shops. Consumers. Money. Advertising. A disgusting amount of people yearning to spend all the pennies they possess. Even on the day of the year we are supposed to spend NO MONEY!
This weekend I was in London. After spending a day at a funeral questioning life and how important people and happiness are, not possessions, I still managed to spend my only free couple of hours in Selfridges and Topshop London. You would think this may not have been the case after such an event but even I was sucked into the central cortex of shopping in Britain – Oxford Circus. With Arcadia shops taking over, the square is possessed by Topshop, Niketown, H&M, Starbucks and Harvey Nichols. Not to mention thousands of people queuing to buy Louis Vuitton handbags. Never had I seen the likes of this waiting in line to buy a £500 hangbag at 9pm even in Selfridges, especially considering the economic crisis we are supposed to be living in. AND this was the day after Thanksgiving aka Black Friday, aka people are not supposed to buy anything on this day! However in America I have been informed that is the biggest shopping day of the year…an excuse should we say?
A question popped into my head as I fought my way through the plastic bags and up the alley past the homeless men out of the Tube Station – how much more money does a shop make being at the epicentre of Oxford Circus rather than a few hundred metres down Oxford Street? I bet it’s definalty a significant amount, which I’m determined to find out! The amount of consumers in Topshop (in the centre of Oxford Circus) was about ten times the amount of the 2nd Topshop which is only just down the road. As if we didn’t already know, it shows where something is makes all the difference, and we don’t have any sympathy for special days obviously.
Photo I took of Topshop, Oxford Circus
Photo I took of Topshop, Oxford Circus
But…is this then the same for advertising? Just along Regent Street I come to Piccadilly Circus, Britain’s version of Broadway in New York. Coca-cola, McDonalds, L’Oreal and Maybelline are usual advertisers here with huge flight signs flashing violently covering the Victorian buildings surrounding them. But my question – is an advert more successful here or just back down the street in a calmer place where there aren’t others to steal your eye?
Photo I took, Niketown, Oxford Circus
Photo I took, Niketown, Oxford Circus
Do different things work better in different environments? Yes. But does it depend on the idea, or what you are trying to sell? I believe yes.
P.S. Obviously Black Friday does not exist in the centre of London!
Monday, 30 November 2009
Wednesday, 25 November 2009
Tuesday, 24 November 2009
I must have been subconsciously avoiding writing about our project on designing an exhibition based on the Jute Industry, but surprisingly to me I am increasingly inclined to write about how intriging some of the research I found is. Jute, being a ecological fibre played a huge role in the life of the people of Dundee, amongst other places such as India, Bangladesh etc, even though Jute was not grown in Scotland. Through research much was interesting but what I found the most important was that of jute as a sustainable material.
The most astonishing fact I came across is that jute consumes several amounts of CO2 as Oxygen! Why do we not know this?! Maybe it is just Tesco’s keeping this a secret while they mass produce millions of Jute carrier bags to become ahead of the ‘green’ market. Even on the Santa Claus on the new Tesco advert is carrying a Jute Sack! I wonder if in ten years time when our children see the ‘old school’ adverts (just like us with those familiar Coca-Cola Christmas adverts that we will never forget), will they think this Jute bag was what Santa has carried for years?! Let’s hope this material isn’t as secretive as what it is to us, (unless you have designed an exhibition on it or lived in Dundee in the jute, jam and journalism days!).
This did influence us so much for our exhibition design that we created a sustainable and ecofriendly one that can be placed straight into the environment after the exhibition is over so it can live on forever secretly, better way to leave a mark to remember than a photograph. In brief – based on the Snake by Richard Serra, we created grass panelled walls, creating a atmospheric journey through the space evoking emotions reflecting the social conditions the people involved in the Jute Industy in Dundee had to live with. We experimented by cutting shapes into grass, staining grass and researched finding out it is possible to develop photographs directly onto grass, subjecting different parts to different amounts of light therefore allowing various levels of photosynthesis to occur thus creating a picture perfect photograph.
Artists Heather Ackroyd and Dan Harveys advertisement installation at Wimbeldon 2008.
Wednesday, 18 November 2009
Friday, 13 November 2009
There are three identity types – Social, personal and place. Psychologists’ are usually interested in social and personal identity but place identity is extremely important in not just where we call ‘home’, but why we do and what impact it has on our lives. Recently I attended a talk by Mhairi Bowe who is finishing her PhD in Psychology. She questions ‘what is home’?’
(my old house - still home)
During Mhari’s talk I was intrigued with what she was saying about how place represents past, present and future and they are permanent features of life. We are always in some environment, whether it the other side of the world or snuggled up in bed, but these places makes us feel. And these places completely take over how we feel even if subconsciously and contribute to the way we act in this environment. This shows how place affects our wellbeing. If somewhere feels like home we feel safe, warm and comfortable. People described home as somewhere you can ‘go and lock the world out’, a place you can ‘safely flop’ and a place that caters to ‘mans instant needs’. For me if I have my UGG boots, a cup of tea and custard creams and my MacBook (including WIFI!) I would reckon I’m pretty sorted. Now rereading this I suppose this is a consumers point of view in a consumer and media driven world, proving how things have ridiculously changed. But home can be anywhere and home can travel around with you. It is simply somewhere you are at ease and have a sense of self. This is vital to wellbeing.
This point got me thinking about others and how people less off, immigrants, refugees, armed forces and such like see ‘home’. Place evokes emotion, memory and thought. You have a relationship with the environment you are in and for me this is something I am intrigued to find out more about for my designing life. (I shall keep you updated!)
If I put the word ‘PlaceBook’ out to you, what would you think? A place? Or one of Facebook’s new revoltingly addictive games?! Well not quite. PlaceBook is a new website developed to being people and place together, to share peoples’ identities and stories which make us remember and enjoy, potentially improve our wellbeing so check it out if you too and intrigued by the relationship between people and place.
Tuesday, 10 November 2009
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Friday, 23 October 2009
I'll admit now. I have an Iggle Piggle cuddly toy. This might mean absolutely nothing to you but I have a feeling more peopele know who I mean than you would think. Iggle Piggle is blue. And has a brigh red blanket. He is simply designed and easily recognised by children and parents,and childmilders, actually probably most of the British society.. Here he is;
Sunday, 18 October 2009
I could go into this for ever and ever and ever but the point I'm trying to get across here is my frustration about how little I know and how much I want to know aka as much as I can. I think I will be about 80 years old before I know enough about the world to be able to create a life changing design. Luckily for me it is the best excuse to get out into the world and experience it.
'Designers are not creative': 'Designers are Wankers' - While I was browsing 'crap designs' and why they are just not relevant to the world they are created in I came across this. They have teamed up with Grafix magazine to uncover the design writers of the future. It looks like a good networking site not just for chat but to experience other ideas, intriguing and some controversial but questioning design and what 'sucks'. Check it out at;
Monday, 12 October 2009
Tuesday, 6 October 2009
Thursday, 1 October 2009
You’re walking down the street alone. As you walk past people what do you do? Avoid eye contact? Smile? Stare at them to try to give off a positive vibe that says you’re not one of those people that ignore human existence completely? It’s simply one of those awkward moments in day-to-day life that we’ve just learnt to accept as normal. But what about when you walk towards someone and you both veer to the same side to pass then try to dodge to the other, resulting in a kind of strange bobbing movement as if trying to guard the basketball ne. Today, this happened to me on maybe 6 different occasions. So, if it happened to me so many times in one day, but on an average day it probably wouldn’t even once, this must mean it ‘addictive’ in a sense, therefore contagious right? And another person is involved meaning they would then spread this ‘awkward dodge’ around for the rest of the day too?! An example of this is shown in ‘The Tipping Point’ when Malcolm Gladwell talks about yawning. By just seeing the word ‘yawn’ written in the book it encourages you to do it whether you like it or not, despite the fact you’re probably not even tired. Like a virus, these things spread and spread, resulting in an epidemic. I wonder if those people I ‘dodged’ today ‘dodged’ others again and again, like me. Could I have started an epidemic in Dundee City Centre? Or, was I simply one of the spreaders of the ‘Stickiness’ that causes these epidemics in the first place?
I can just imagine every single shopper bobbing oddly around the town, Primark bags whirling…