My idea for this infographic changed once I did more research about my chosen topic. I originally planned to create a ‘how to cure depression’ cheat sheet, from information in a book I had been reading. I still think that this would work well as an infographic. But for whatever reason, I became more interested in the idea of the way in which we talk to ourselves and what that actually does to our bodies. I also think this is a very current topic because we have been so stressed with assignments and exams in the last week. I have actually learnt from my own infographic and research!
So with my new topic of ‘how does self talk affect you?’, my communication objective is to visually show that your thoughts affect more than just your mind, they affect your whole body, in both positive and negative ways. By looking at my infographic, I want people to realise that negative thinking can be detrimental to their health and that it affects them in more ways than they before realised, and that changing these thoughts to positive has really positive effects on your health.
My infographic is divided with the negative effects on the body, and the positive effects on the body. I decided to put the body in the middle as I wanted this to be the main feature, to really clear show that the whole body is affected, and I used yellow pointers to illustrate the specific parts affected that people should be concerned about. I decided to use a soft, but bright colour palette as I aimed for this to look like a poster that you might see in a high school health classroom, or around uni in an exam study area. I also think that the soft colour palette shows the information in a way that doesn’t scare people off or make them worry, but more makes them think about their actions and assess themselves.
Having not used illustrator before, I used all the skills I learnt in class to create this infographic. It was also definitely helpful having knowledge of other Adobe programs, since they all work quite similar. Also, using the pen tool was not difficult as we had done this in the last assignment. As well as using the Illustrator tools we learnt in class such as the pen tool, gradients, stroke, and paths, I also took into account a lot of the technical things that we learnt. It was helpful to do further research on these, but the ideas we learnt about composition, hierarchy, fonts and colours were really important when creating this, especially in the final stages of tidying up the elements and colours.
I am very happy with my final infographic, and it is great to see my progress over the last few weeks. It has been interesting to learn that there really are ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ ways to create an infographic, and I think I have succeeded with mine.
Brain model [Image]. (2015). Retrieved from http://www.psypost.org/2015/04/study-near-death-brain-signaling-accelerates-demise-of-the-heart-33179#prettyPhoto
Office woman [Image]. (2009). Retrieved from https://www.flickr.com/photos/9110880@N04/7636476418
Referenced Information Sources:
Cherry, K. (n.d.). The benefits of positive thinking. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/PositivePsychology/a/benefits-of-positive-thinking.htm
Chopra, D. (2011). Can positive thinking make you well? Retrieved from http://edition.cnn.com/2011/12/05/health/positive-thinking-deepak-chopra/
Clear, J. (2013). The science of positive thinking: how positive thoughts build your skills, boost your health, and improve your work. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/james-clear/positive-thinking_b_3512202.html
Farouk-Radwan, M. (n.d.). How can negative thinking affect your brain, mood and body? Retrieved from http://www.2knowmyself.com/How_can_negative_thinking_affect_your_brain_mood_and_body
Lawson, K. (n.d.). How do thoughts and emotions impact health? Retrieved from http://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/enhance-your-wellbeing/health/thoughts-emotions/how-do-thoughts-emotions-impact-health
Morgan-Ford, M. (2015). How the power of positive thinking affects your health. Retrieved from http://www.earlytorise.com/how-the-power-of-positive-thinking-affects-your-health/
Rankin, L. (2011). Scientific proof we can heal ourselves. Retrieved from http://www.owningpink.com/blogs/owning-pink/scientific-proof-we-can-heal-ourselves
Rankin, L. (2013). Scientific proof that negative beliefs harm your health. Retrieved from http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-9690/scientific-proof-that-negative-beliefs-harm-your-health.html
What is the impact of negative thinking? (n.d.) Retrieved May 29th, 2015, from http://www.alwaysgreater.com/achievements/the-power-of-negative-thinking
Here is my work in progress so far. I don’t have much to go but there is still a lot of refining to do to make this look better. I still need to work the colours a bit more and maybe add some gradients. I also think I have too much text so I’m thinking about how I can use more symbols in the circles of text. I also want to decide if I want to change this to landscape.
I have done a rough version of my A8 as well, but at the moment the fonts are all different, which will change.
The infographic below explains important things to consider when choosing fonts (open in new tab and click to zoom to make bigger):
The main points I took from this are:
– Stick to two fonts – one for the headings and one for the body text – make sure they are not too similar though, otherwise the audience can’t understand the hierarchy
– Know the personality of the font you are using as this affects its meaning
– Be careful with reverse type – e.g. typing light on a dark background – make sure the contrast is enough that it can be read easily
– Watch out for stray words left at the end of a paragraph on one line at the end – keep it all together in blocks
– Consider using older style figures for numbers – easier to read – pay close attention to this as the font of numbers goes easily overlooked.
Since I have been struggling with getting the colours right for my infographic, I thought it would be a good idea to do this research post.
According to this infographic, http://neomam.com/blog/what-makes-an-infographic-bad-and-how-to-make-it-better/ the things to avoid when using colour are as follows:
– Using rainbow colours
– Using bright colours unnecessarily
– Using colours that are too similar, with not enough contrast
This source suggests using a palette of three colours for the infographic, with potentially a couple of different shades of each. They suggest using neutral colours and colours that contrast – e.g. light and dark. When putting text against the background there should be enough contrast that the text can be easily read without straining the eye.
I have also found some useful information at this link: http://piktochart.com/pick-great-color-schemes-your-infographics/, some good points I found here are:
– Do not use more than 4 colours & stick to 1 or 2 main colours that are clear and bold, with the rest of the colours complimenting them (subtle and warm)
– When you feel tempted to use more colours, instead use different shades of your existing colours
– Use colours that fit with your content – e.g. brown for coffee – this adds more context to your content
– Draw inspiration from natural colours – wood, water, earth
This source suggests trying out online apps to find colour schemes and to match colours, one of which is: http://coolors.co/, which I am definitely going to play around with!
The main point to consider when creating an infographic is getting the right amount of text. An infographic shouldn’t be too wordy, as it defeats it’s purpose and hinders clear communication. According to http://piktochart.com/tips-for-a-great-informative-infographic-design-guest-blog/ you should aim to use images instead of words at every chance you have, as images create much more impact.
http://www.creativebloq.com/graphic-design/8-steps-infographic-71412474 says that infographics should SHOW NOT TELL. It is important to balance the text with images, and to convert text to images wherever possible. It is also important to try to avoid slapping paragraphs of information in the infographic as they will be overlooked/not read and the information will be wasted. This source also gives examples of how the text used should work with and be relevant to specific parts of the visuals. I am really focussing on this in my infographic as the information I need to convey is directly linked to certain parts of the body, which it will be pointed to.
Overall, I need to use as little text as possible, using images to convey meaning which should work in communicating my meaning clearly without adding paragraphs of text to explain what I want to convey.
Here is my progress so far. The main thing I am working on at the moment is getting all the information I need to finish my infographic. I need a few points each side for how negative and positive self talk affects the body. I am also thinking of including some examples of what negative and positive self talk is, perhaps with a speech bubble from the mouth, or otherwise a box at the bottom with tips for how to turn negative self talk into positive.
I think I also need to do a bit more work with colour as I’m not sure all the colours go together well. And I am very indecisive about the colour and font of the text at the bottom.
My plan for the rest of the infographic is to have the information mentioned above pointing to different areas of the body, and to also do more tracing of organs, so that I have more than just the effects on the brain, but also to the heart, lungs etc. I am also going to play around with gradients on the clothing.
Thoughts would be appreciated!
According to http://neomam.com/blog/what-makes-an-infographic-bad-and-how-to-make-it-better/, and important thing to consider when creating an infographic is to leave some negative space, and not completely clutter your piece and covering the background. It says that allowing some of the background to show through helps the eye to organize the data presented. It is important to get this balance right though, as too much white space will leave the infographic looking unfinished.
The composition of the elements within the infographic should be balanced and aligned to allow the viewer to let their eyes take them through your information. When elements are messily arranged, it can be hard to know what to look at first.
This infographic shows some different layout styles when creating an infographic:
As my infographic compares two sides to a topic, I am drawn mostly to the comparison style. This source says that when comparing things in this way, the visuals have to be very strong, so that you get your point across – which is what I aim to do, particularly because I do not want to rely on text for people to understand the points I am trying to convey. This source also says that using a comparison layout works well if you have bullet-pointed information that you want to convey simply.