Design as Activism – GIF Idea Generation & Experimentation

Before moving into the idea generation for how the GIF would look I already knew which images I would be working with. Following the decision to use photography throughout all elements of the campaign I needed to ensure that there were photos suitable. Using the ‘plastic cocktail’ inspired photos I was able to utilise these to create a GIF.

Using my sketchbook I started to sketch out an initial idea for the GIF, using a few frames to create an insight into what I wanted the GIF to look like. This was helpful in helping visualise where the element will need to know. I sketched 3 different initial design ideas as I felt that were all variations of each other, I then took them into photoshop to start creating the GIF’s.

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Below is the first GIF idea that I sketched out. Using the images of the ‘plastic cocktail’ filling up the glass is the only piece of movement within the GIF and shows the viewer what PCA is about. However, on reflection I don’t think that this communicates clearly enough about what the campaign is raise awareness off. The logo in the bottom left hand corner is small and difficult to read. I think that this was a good initial starting point and basis for the other GIF developed.


For the second GIF idea that I sketched I thought about using movement within the words to highlight message that the campaign is aiming to show. Using the typeface DIN Alternate Bold (like the logo) shows consistency throughout the branding. The GIF is using the rhetorical question ‘Would you drink this?’ which makes the audience pause for a moment and think about what’s happening to our food due to pollution. The use of image and words here work well in establishing this message. Although they work to get a greater sense of the message I found that there was now too much movement in the GIF which almost distracted from the message. This is something that I considered when looking at my research again, seeing that others had only used small amounts of movement, making their outcome successful. Also, I like the use of the campaign logo at the end of GIF it shows the viewer what to research to find further information about the campaigns. I do feel that the logo could be paused longer to allow the audience time to digest the brand and process it.


The third GIF idea I sketched out used various element from the first two ideas, still using the ‘plastic cocktail’ images and components that had been seen previously. There is only movement of the images in GIF watch the glass fill with the drink. This combined with the static words makes the message easier for the viewer to understand and grasp. Instead of there being 20 different frames this particular GIF idea actually has 32 to allow the message to stay on the screen longer. You also see the glass fill up twice within the GIF which allows the viewer to see the drink twice and the particles of plastic inside of it. As mentioned previously my research highlight that some GIF often display their logo at the end of the GIF, and this was something I felt worked well in previous ideas. I created more of a pause at the end of the GIF so that the logo was on screen for a longer duration, to try and allow people time to see the campaign name.


Overall these initial ideas all are developments of each other, I think that I will take the third idea and see what developments I can make to improve it. I have decided to move forward with the third GIF because I felt that it was the one that communicated the message better when compared to the other ideas.

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