VIDEO GAME DESIGN

2022

Cursed Mountain

UX Research

UI Design

Brand Identity

2D Artist — Gabby Aidam
Developer — John Doe

ROLE

TEAM

Developed the UI/UX for an original platformer game with a focus on accessibility for Global Game Jam 2022.

DESC

Conducted primary and secondary user and market research to position my social campaign empowering female consumers.

DESC

UX Designer

Graphic Designer

ROLE

TIME

5 weeks

Individual project

UX RESEARCH

2021

Get Real

01 / PROBLEM BACKGROUND

Advertising Shits in our Minds

The average person is estimated to encounter 6,000 to 10,000 ads daily. These ads often showcase an image of idealized female beauty: slim, light-skinned, and digitally altered to unrealistic proportions. This deceptive and uninclusive American beauty idea hurts young girls’ mental and emotional health.

Between the ages of 11 and 14, the number of girls unhappy with their appearance nearly doubles, putting them at a higher risk for mental illnesses like eating disorders and depression.

Victoria’s Secret’s body underepresentation.

Airbrushed and photoshopped adverts.

Young girls grew less satisfied in their bodies after playing with a Barbie.

PROBLEM 

SOLUTION

Get Real is a multi-platform social movement that empowers female consumers by dismantling predatorial beauty marketing that undermines their self-esteem for-profit and demands more authentic and inclusive marketing behavior within the media and beauty industries.

02 / EMPATHIZE - USER RESEARCH

Targeting the Targeted: Growing Girls

AUDIENCE

  • Those who grew up in robust cities (where advertising thrives).

  • Young girls (15-21) who are avid, daily social media users (advertising is particularly strong on adolescents, as they are still developing their self-concepts).

ETHNOGRAPHY

​Living in NYC and being online has given me direct access to study the practices in which consumers revolt against predatorial advertising in real life and online.

SCROLL

Forms of Current Consumer Protest

TAKEAWAYS

Physically critiquing adverts through graffiti, stickers, and writing.

1.

Utilizing social media features, like hashtags, comments, and sharing posts.

2.

These forms of protest aim to platform and build a collective voice made by consumers, for consumers.

3.

I used secondary research to further validate my hypothesis: that (1) consumers don’t feel represented by current beauty marketing and (2) it poses a threat to their emotional and mental development.

STATS

67%

*According to Mentil’s (marketing research agency) 2022 study

of Americans agree social media

has created impossible beauty standards*.

50%

of ads found in teen magazines

use “sexualized beauty” to sell products, creating a mindset from a young age that beauty is defined by looking and acting a certain way.

Those with body image dissatisfaction are at higher risk for:

anxiety disorders
substance use disorders
mood disorders

**Those aged 18-24 in 2021.

~25%

of Gen Z**

consumers feel unrepresented in beauty advertisements.

INTERVIEWS

Because this project delved into personal and sometimes sensitive issues, I conducted semi-structured interviews with a handful of young women within my target audience to better understand their pain points and wants in their experience with female representation in media.

“Growing up, I didn’t see myself represented on TV. I assumed it was because I wasn’t worthy enough.” - Simone

“I didn’t like my brown skin as early as elementary school.” - Shahd

“There are so many misconceptions built around what being a woman is.” - Esmaa

03 / DEFINE - NEEDS & OPPORTUNITIES

Consumer’s Pain Points

Brainwashed

Young women are socially conditioned to hate their bodies. While consumers are aware that pervasive beauty messaging can be disingenuous, it takes lots of self-control to stay resilient to it.

Underepresented

Women of all body types, skin tones, and other traits are not represented in the media industry, and, more importantly, no concentrated space to platform consumers’ demands.

Insecure

Many girls feel insecure because they are conditioned to think that their natural features are burdens they need to “fix”. Their anxiety around their appearance halts their growth and confidence.

How might we support consumers in being mindful of predatorial marketing and demanding for representation in the beauty industries while remaining empowered through the process?
 

TAKEAWAYS

After analyzing social efforts, I realized 

Get Real needed to...

Specialize in women media representation.

1.

Allow the consumer to be the head of the movement, and Get Real the neck. Support consumer voice has brought real change before (i.e. Victoria Secret changing their campaign).

2.

Talk with the consumer, not at. Allow viewer contribution through digital and print media.

3.

MARKET

RESEARCH

I conducted a competitor analysis of organizations aiming to platform consumer voice to challenge corporate power.

 

Studying other efforts helped me clarify what is missing and how Get Real can position itself to fulfill that need, along with prioritizing which features enhance user experience when interacting with Get Real.

I converted the user pain points into campaign objectives that would guide my process.

GOALS

Brainwashed

Mindful

Through creative activism and educative workshops, Get Real helps consumers dismantle and prevent beauty messaging from provoking insecurity within them.
 

Underrepresented

Represented

Get Real should be a concentrated platform to represent consumer voices to corporations through social media and OOH prints, strategies women are already using to stand up.

Insecure

Empowered

Get Real should empower its users through community-building and education on developing confidence and digital resilience amidst corporate advertising.

04 / IDEATION

Status Quo vs. Consumer Protest

Get Real reappropriates forms of popular culture its audience grew up with, such as Disney and Barbie, to challenge hidden implications within them. Loud type (in mockery of yelling American adverts), a blunt black and white palette, and graffiti-like strokes develop an honest, authentic, activist voice.

MOODBOARD

I platformed common consumer sentiments (i.e., not finding a doll akin to their appearance) and positioned them in my sketches through blunt compositions and big and bold type.

SKETCHES

05 / FINAL DESIGNS

Get Real Campaign

Based on my research, the target audience’s biggest gripes range from consumerism, materialism, and the objectification of women in advertising. Get Real content should explore and challenge the interrelations between these topics.

THEMES

SCROLL

Get Real stickers serve as an opening for consumer protest.

STICKERS

With the youth's avid use of social media, it is crucial to reach them digitally.

Through Instagram, viewers can join the conversation, share their experiences, and strengthen the Get Real voice.

SOCIAL