Can a designer have an impact on our culture? Can a graphic designer convey specific messages to influence our behavior and relationship with our social environment?
The quote above is the intro to the 100 minute long TedX talk by economist Jeremy Rifkins, where he discusses several problems caused by the previous industrial revolutions and what technology the millennial generation needs to implement in order to keep us on the right path into the future.
My goal in this project was to summarize the lecture into an interactive experience. I wanted to expand my understanding of interactive storytelling. Find methods for communicating complex information, and use these methods to engage the users and catch their curiosity.
Considering Jeremy Rifkin's lecture deals with how a marginal cost (the cost of producing another product) is almost zero, is optimal for a well-functioning economy, I wanted to also choose a medium where the marginal cost is also near zero. Therefore I chose to create an interactive experience as my solution. I sketched out a few ideas, and landed on creating a timeline between the past, present and future industrial revolutions that the user could navigate through and read about inventions that sparked the revolutions. The illustrations are hand drawn with pencil and pen, then digitally colored and put together in photoshop. Finally I created a prototype of the interactive timeline in InVision Studio.
I set up a meeting with senior architect, Bård Stangnes, from Snøhetta in order to gain an understanding behind the history of architecture and how the future would look like. This helped me pick out iconic architectural buildings for the different time periods in my design. He explained how the development in architectural software have made it possible to design evermore complex shapes and designs. That the future of their task are going to be oriented towards incorporating foliage into their design to increase the well-being of people, and that solar panels on rooftops would be everywhere. This gave me a lot of inspiration when illustrating the the past, present and future industrial revolutions.
Go on a journey from the past to the current technological wonders that shaped our environment. We need to take a look at the past and understand what influenced our environment onto the path we are heading towards. Then, we can understand what changes we have to do in order to create a more inspiring future. Take a look at what the three most influential technologies of the future is, and how they are going to shape the environment that we live in.