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How to make your first UX comic (UX Scotland)

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June 21, 2013

How to make your first UX comic (UX Scotland)

Slides from my talk at UX Scotland, with added notes to help you create your first UX comic.

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almostexact

June 21, 2013
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Transcript

  1. How to make your first UX comic / storyboard Bonny

    Colville-Hyde @almostexact With added commentary! #uxscot
  2. What is a comic? “Comics have a vocabulary that doesn't

    even require language. In fact, many of its symbols could be considered a language of their own that requires no teaching or explanation” Kevin Cheng, ‘See what I mean’
  3. the power of images

  4. Even without using any words, an image can communicate an

    awful lot about how people use a service or device, with very few details. For instance, what do you think these two are doing?
  5. ...And what about now??

  6. And what about this man?

  7. £££ Even with very few clues in an image can

    communicate a whole narrative to the viewer - which they will do the work to fill in, even though you’ve not written anything!
  8. THE PROBLEM WITH UX Don’t get me wrong, I love

    UX, but it’s not perfect.
  9. DEATH BY DOCUMENTATION We like ‘deliverables’ Deliverables don’t make the

    experience better We can bore stakeholders How often do you think clients read ALL of the documents you produce?
  10. Empathy Most documents don’t help team members to emphathise with

    users - instead they create abstraction Where as comics can create empathy, thank goodness!
  11. Comics can help

  12. Sequential art Sequential art gives us a means to express

    changing time, space and emotion in a succinct way It also allows us to explore and visualise ideas without significant investment Check out Will Eisner’s books about comics to learn more about sequential art.
  13. COMICS CAN BE USED IN MANY WAYS throughout a project

    To show how things are now To show how people would like things to be To review how things could be different Plus comics are quick to create once you’ve had a bit of practice!
  14. When to use comics Research Analysis Concepts IA W ireframes

    Testing Prototyping Build
  15. When to use comics Research Analysis Concepts IA W ireframes

    Testing Prototyping Build Feel free to use them whenever you need to - there aren’t any rules.
  16. Benefits Test ideas More effective communication tool than standard documentation

    Sharing within organisations Less about the interface, more about the tasks people do
  17. an example

  18. XKCD Using very few details, XKCD explain the problem of

    information saturation.
  19. Another xkcd classic This XKCD bit of brilliance only has

    one panel, yet can still communicate so much!
  20. This is part of a comic series I made for

    an automotive finance company - its based on task based personas and depth interview research.
  21. None
  22. None
  23. None
  24. COMIC ANATOMY

  25. Layouts

  26. Gutters What goes on between the panels in a comic

    is just as important as what goes on in the panels!
  27. Gutters Gutters can be used to show the passing of

    time.
  28. Gutters Even with very few details, combined with the gutters,

    we can string together narratives.
  29. communication Even when speech bubbles are left empty, they still

    communicate with readers.
  30. getting started drawing Its really not *that* difficult! Honest!

  31. why you don’t need to be an artist The simpler

    you keep characters, the easier it is for the reader to empathise with them. Too much detail is unnecessary.
  32. Drawing people Using guidelines to help you place your character’s

    features, you can ensure you draw them consistently.
  33. It’s all in the face Note how the curved lines

    make the face look more 3D.
  34. Looking at things

  35. Emotions Eyebrows and mouths are incredibly powerful tools to communicate

    emotions!
  36. Adding details If you add too much detail, your characters

    will stop being so easy to empathise with...be careful you don’t go OTT!
  37. Body language Body language can be used to communicate a

    hell of a lot of emotion in your characters - you don’t need to draw much to get the effect.
  38. developing your style Once you’ve experimented a bit you can

    create your own set of characters - as simple or detailed as you like...
  39. Storytelling The narrative of your comics must demonstrate how people

    do or could use a service
  40. Creating your plot Personas are really useful starting points Refer

    to research to pull out behaviours and stories that could bring the comic to life
  41. lets make a comic This is a little 30 minute

    exercise to give you some practice drawing...!
  42. Flowers for someone special Imagine you’ve got a new client

    called ‘Mister Flowers’. They sell flowers online, but they want new ideas about how to help their customers find and send the best flowers to their loved ones. Your challenge is to consider the two personas on the next page, and decide on which one you’d like to make a comic about. Use about six panels to tell your story about how Mister Flowers could help this customer. Consider the entire flower purchase process: where is the character? Who are they with? What’s the occasion? What device are they using? etc...
  43. mini personas Charlie •Always forgets birthdays and special occasions •Very

    busy lifestyle juggling commuting and a packed social life What they want: •Improve their reputation with friends and family •Make their loved ones feel special •Get a gift sent on time! Key constraint Time Chris •Likes planning and researching gifts for friends and family •Has a limited budget, but likes to do as much as possible with it What they want: •To get the ‘perfect’ gift for their loved ones •Get everything sorted in advance •Maintain their reputation as a great gift giver! Key constraint Budget
  44. Time saving tips TIMEs UP

  45. Time saving tips

  46. Paper comics Draw out devices and other ‘props’ on a

    master sheet to trace from - this speeds up drawing comics. You can trace photos too.
  47. DIGITAL COMICS I like to use Adobe Illustrator and Comic

    Life to create my comics.
  48. Here’s a view of one of my Adobe Illustrator documents

    I use to store all the different assets I use and re-use within the comics I make.
  49. This is a view of the AWESOME Comic Life! It

    makes producing comics wonderfully easy.
  50. Further reading Remember the UX Scotland discount code!

  51. Thank you Bonny Colville-Hyde @almostexact Feel free to contact me

    with any questions - or if you’d like me to send you come blank comic layouts to practice on. Have fun!