Data Visualisation Evaluation.

I feel that I have got enough out of this project as possible. I have enjoyed the project and feel like I’ve learnt a lot of valuable new skills. When I first received the project I was a little bit apprehensive as data visualisation was not something that interested me. My lack of interest I think was because of my lack of knowledge. But from studying and experimenting with data visualisation I have found it is extremely interesting and a very useful use of graphic design.

Through my new set of design skills I have gained a lot of confidence. The way I interpreted my data collection was using stop motion to make animation which something I’ve never done before. University is all about learning therefore I thought it would be good to tackle a form of communication I had never done before. Im so happy I took this risk as now I’ve found I really enjoy stop motion as labor intensive as it is!

My project proposal that I set myself at the start was….

“We know what we are, but not what we may be” once wrote William Shakespeare in Hamlet that inspired me as a practitioner to voice the identity of the modern day student. This is a project theme I have a detailed understanding of, as I am a student myself. I intend to inform and educate. My project will highlight the trending fashions, interests and qualities of students too students themselves, up and coming students and the general public. I feel the need to energise this theme to the public, as students are the future doctors, bus drivers, solicitors and teachers of tomorrow. These are the people that are vital to the community. I want my project to regain the trust of the elder generation who have a preconceived idea of students being “Yobs” Thugs” and “Chavs”. The data I collect will also be emphasized to encourage a younger generation of people to further their education as I hope it will project a prosperous image.

My final outcome will be informative, aesthetically pleasing and visually compelling. I would like to transcribe the data I collect in the form of an illustrated animation. This should be suitable to all age ranges and be suitable for any visual form of communication. The animation can take any form of educated approach, it may be humorous or strictly for educational purposes.

As I am a student myself I am at an advantage in accessing primary research. I will collect numerous responses to a constructed questionnaire to create a greater and well evaluated understanding of the modern day student. As well as collecting primary research I will also do a lot of secondary research on existing data and practitioners from animation in hope in will inspire and encourage my own ideas. With deep research I feel I will be able to create a innovative and contemporary animation that will fulfill my intentions.

The design process is very important, I will need to experiment with a selection of ideas testing out different approaches and methods of animation. Some major components of pre production are story boarding and layouts. I will have to create many possible illustrations using a range of materials such as paint, pencils and pen. Once an idea has been finalised I can then start to experiment with other things such as shot sequence and camera angles if I decide to put my illustrations in a 3D environment.

Through this project I intend to gain satisfaction and gratification with the thought of contributing to the community with an exploration of the modern day student.

I feel I am successful in creating a  final outcome that is “informative, aesthetically pleasing and visually compelling.” From the start I said to myself I was going to create animation that appealed to all age ranges and I feel I have accomplished this. If i was to do the project again however I would not use a glossy spray paint of the board I made out of MDF as it reflected the light, and the camera picked up on this. Overall, I am more than happy with the outcome of this project.


Data visualisation final outcome, Stop Motion.

After standing for 12 hours plotting my data with wire taking a picture each time I opened the photographs in a new composition to make a stop motion animation in After Affects. Im not going to lie I did have great difficulty doing this as this is my first ever attempt at stop motion animation. However with guidance from my tutor and a lot of determination, I created this.
Im extremely happy with the outcome of this data visualisation project, I think I have effectively used my collected data to form a interesting piece of graphic language. The animation meets all the criteria I set when I wrote my own brief.
To create the animation I firstly opened up after affects and started a new composition. Then I imported all my photographs in a Jpeg sequence. The only problem with doing this is when I had deleted photographs during the photography stage because of mistakes, After effects picked up on these as missing photos in the sequence. Therefore when I played the animation at this stage black pages would appear in my timeline. To get rid of these I had to search through the animation and delete frames. Also because the photographs are such large file sizes, I had to compress the size so the computer was able to play to animation.
I have learnt so much during this project as I stepped out of my comfort zone as a practitioner attempting to create stop motion animation. With the skills I have learnt I will hopefully be able to imterpert another set brief in the form of a stop motion.

Professional practise, Making stock motion.




Today I set up my board on this piece of equipment so I had even light spread across it. Also using this meant it stood in the exact same place. With the camera clamped directly above all my photographs had the same composition.
After experimenting with camera and light settings, once I was happy I started the stock motion process.
With bright coloured flexible wire I stood for 12 hours in the studio plotting then photography each and every question answered from my set of data. 100 people took part in my questionnaire therefore in total I plotted and photographed 1000 points.
All I need to do now is upload the photos onto either photoshop or after affects and put them in a time sequence to create stock motion. I hope 12 hours hard work pays off!

Professional practise, MDF board.




After sending my illustrator file to be cut via the laser cutter on a piece of MDF I painted the surface white. After I was happy with the coverage I used a spray enamal to give it a glossy finish. I did have the text ingraved into the board but because the font was so tiny when the laser cutter cut it burnt the wood making it difficult to read the writing. I was able to fix this problem by painting over the text and then using stick on letters. I actually prefer the aesthetics of the stick on letters. I used a silver letters so it is not the main visual focus point. I want the plotting of the data to be the main focus point which is why I have bought bright vibrant colour wire to plot with.

Now the board is complete I can start plotting data and recording it to make a animation.


Professional practise, MDF board.


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After doing some rough experiments and deciding on the order I wanted to arrange the question around the A3 page I started to convert my drawings into an illustrator file. To create a drawing to scale I followed a grid. In the centre I put the project title so when I create my animation showing the points being plotted it will inform the audience the subject matter. To cut this file out on MDF, I need to use a laser cutter. To use a laser cutter I need to set the illustrator file to the correct format and settings to tell the machine exactly how I want it cut. Cut lines need to be black and lines an type to be etched need to be red. The laser cutter can only etch single lined fonts therefore it wouldn’t recognise standard Helvetica. As I’m using Helvetica I needed to create an outline for all the text. Once all the settings were correct I sent my file to the laser cutter.

Once I have all the MDF board cut I can then purchase different coloured fuse fire and start to plot my data. Every time I plot a set of data I am going to photograph the board at a 180 degree angle. Eventually I will have a large collection of photographs to put together as a short animation. This is exactly what I set out to do in my project proposal.