This project explored design as a form of exchange. I learned methodologies for cultivating empathy of a user. The first step was to formulate questions to interview a stranger (or acquaintance) of my choice. Then the next step was to translate the interview into a 'visual portrait'—synthesizing the knowledge gained into a visual form. The final step was to design 'a gift' for this person that can be a designed scenario, object, or service.
Get to know Harry Harris, a former waiter at a little restaurant in the town of Hastings:
" Excuse me. I'd like to get a better sense of who you are and what you care about, since we've never had the enough time to talk while you work. I'm going to ask you some questions if you don't mind..."
The Interview and the Portrait
I translated the interview into different levels to convey the depth of his personality. The first layer depicts the way he sees the world; the second layer portrays his job vs his passion; the third layer how the activity in the world affects him; and the last one conveys his philosophy in life and what is meaningful to him.
"Survival Kit for Grad School" is a deck of cards designed to offer tips to help Harry Harris have a better Graduate School experience. It’s a compilation of insights from different students from the fields of Arts, Architecture, Design, Engineer Graduate Degrees. Each contributor provided valuable insights of their learning experience for the technical (prepare), conceptual (think), emotional (feel) and social (interact) categories. Most of them provided their names and became co-authors of this kit.
Thanks to everyone for your collaboration. You made Harry Harris very happy.
Video of the Gift Experience
Harry Harris Interacting with his gift.