D – Describe objectively what happened

The final brief of  this semster is also the second stage of my final major project – comprehend, we were asked to deepen the Final Project research and develop a magazine showing how I have organised, analysed and reflected on the material I collected in last brief  (Pecha Kucha).

The functions of the magazine are to document and communicate. It is a showcase of how I collect and organize data or information, so as developing an analysis, key insignts and findings, helping me to formulate the design challenge. The tasks required organization and communication skill. The question we should bare in mind is: Would a stranger know what is it about?

I have used serverl methods to increase the readability, making sure that the magazine communicates well.

Before starting to design the magazine on computer, it is important to draw a layout of the magazine, ensuring the order of contents is organizing and clear. Therefore, I made a page plan on my sketchbook.


I decided to classify my finding by research method and place the contents in the order according to my research journey, which is desk research, data wall, interview in context, Pecha Kucha, Observation, Visual experience and fact & inspiration.

In each method, below contents will be included:

  • Cover page with explaination of why I used this method
  • Research material with my notes on it
  • Personal Insight

The contents order repeated and a big title for each set of contents used, so that the audiences can catch up with what they are looking at easily.

I also have written an introduction for my design challenge that my readers would have a deeper understand on what’s going on.

Introduction of design challenge

Choice of colour and typographic are vital to make the magazine looks organized. I chose three colours including blue, black and white the make the whole magazine looks united.  I used only one typography to keep the design clean and easy to read. I used 9.5 as the font size to ensure that reader can read the word and at the same time looks good with the layout.

For reading, like relevant articles, I tried to highlight those interesting insight, and putting a QR code at last, providing an effective and direct way for reader to access to the website.

How I highlighted the points I found interesting

The research magazine will be continued beyond the semester.

I- Interpret the events

My insight from this tasks is the importance of looking at how others design a magazine and implicating to our own works. On the day we received the brief, we were asked to take pictures of the design we found inspirating and shared it on Padlet with the class, belows are the key elements we have looked for:

  • Masthead
  • Cover
  • Contents
  • Navigation
  • Running Head
  • Title
  • Subtitle
  • Body
  • Captions
  • Pull-out quotes
  • Folios
  • Layout
  • Typography
  • Pace

All these elements leaded me to produce an organizing magazine. By looking at references, it gave me ideas on how to design the layout and stimulating my creativity.

Through criticizing and looking at each others first draft on 10 may and 15 may 2017, I found there are some elements missing in my magazine:

  • Insufficient of research material
  • Lack of personal insights
  • Research journey map
  • Spelling

This reminded me userability test that we have done in the MusePad project in design 1. We should always share our work with someone who do not know the project, checking if the magazine works well and what is missing.

One of the reason why we are asked to develop a research magazine is to organize and comprehend the research materials we collected from Brief 3, Pecha Kucha, then redefined a design challenge.  Through out the process of designing the magazine, I looked at the research material I collected and released that the insights I found is not as strong as I thought  to bring me to the next stage of my original design challenge: How might we provide  tourist with travaling information in underground by digital cities?

Due to bank holiday, we have a 10 days break before submitting the first draft of magazine, I went back to London and tried to collect more insights by observating.


The results are as follow:

  • Network is covered in some stations over Circle Line (from Slaone square to Barbican)
  • Most of the passengers read news and books rather than using mobil
  • Tourists would bring along with a travel book or screen cap for important traveling information on their mobile in case there is no network.

Speaking of screen capping traveling information beforehand, can we provide tourist with traveling information in a better way before they visit a plac? Then I drew a visual experience on what problems tourist might have before or during traveling.

Visual experience

In my personal experience, as an organizing and cautious person, I always prepare a complete itinerary before traveling in case there is any unexpected issue. However, we ususally have spent lots of time on seraching and sorting out useful traveling information, then planning an itinerary which can fulfill the expectation of me and my travel partners.

Then, I redefined my design challenges as How might we simplify the process for a traveller organizating an itinerary by digital cities?

At last, I used fact & inspiration to generate and list all my thoughts and ideas, so as the next step of my project in response to following questions:

  • What do you know about the present situation?
  • What don’t you know and would like to know?
  • How might I get inspirated and find out those answers?


Fact & inspiration


Finally, all these reserach materials are put together into my research magazine with fully explanied personal thought for my record and provide an easy well to communicate with my supervisor.

E – Evaluate what you learned

The magazine is a good practice on graphic design and booklet design, testing my ability on designing layout, choice of colour and typography. As a part time designer, I have worked with my fellow colleague to design brochures, but not very much experiences designing alone, so far, it is a good experience.

As a person who likes to write down all my personal thinking in sketchbook and a fan of schedule book, I found creating a research magazine is meaningful and useful to me, as it is well-organized so that I can look back to my research material easily. The magazine will carry on in my final major project filling up with contents, it also provided me a direction of my next process:

  • Undergoing more researches
  • Thinking possible projects in broad details
  • Undergoing more case studies and indicating gaps

The magazine also introduced me a new ability – book binding. Among making first draft, second draft and final draft of my research magazine, I have tried bind the book by myself in several ways. Although the final one isn’t perfect, I found book binding is an interesting process which required patient, and tasking if we are an attentive person. It is a good practice for us to learn how to present our work in a professional way.

After all, I am happy during the whole process of producing a research magazine and satisifed with my final draft for the assessment this semester.

P – Plan how this learning will be applied

The final major project has started from April and will last until August. A research magazine is definitely useful for us to look back the research material through out the project.

Besides helping on the projects, it is also a great work to be included in my portfolio to show how far my research skill have developed when studying in master course, at the same time a good piece of work showing my organizing and layout design skill.

I think I will continuous to create a research magazine in my future profession. In one way, it can be used to communicate better with clients or people who don’t familiar with the projects, so as providing evidances on how I made each decision. Another way keep as a record for what projects and researches I have done.