It’s not how you feel about the design or experience,
it’s how the design makes you feel about yourself.
The roots of Psycho-Aesthetics (P/A) come from a uniquely pivotal time in which its founder Ravi Sawhney worked with dozens of cognitive and industrial psychologists developing the first touch screen interface at Xerox PARC, the birthplace of many of today’s technologies, including the Macintosh. During this challenging time, he found that several facts created barriers to its success:
1. People were not yet familiar with computers
Imagine a foot-deep display with a 5-inch by 7-inch display buried inches inside a dark bezel. It was anything but intuitive. Success was finally attained after months of exploration, playing with various designs on screen, and working to reduce the perception of depth and darkness, all of which eventually allowed users who were new to the concept to immediately accept and interact with it. That was 1978.
DOWNLOAD OUR P/A WORKBOOK TO LEARN MOREDOWNLOAD
P/A maps are a scalable design-strategy framework. They are a center point to Psycho-Aesthetics, providing a consistent lens to see the world through. By adopting P/A maps, we as designers develop relevance and understanding of how people see the world, resulting in our ability to empathize with them and their perceptions. Additionally, we find that using P/A maps trigger recall at a higher level than occur otherwise. Viewing visuals trigger recall of process and insights that
allow communication with higher levels of depth, clarity, and conviction. The maps become a new shared language between us and our stakeholders.It is used to map personas, brands, and offerings against the consumer’s Hierarchy of Needs, Desires, and Aspirations on one hand and levels of interactivity on the other. Once these entities are mapped, opportunity zones (White Space / Blue Ocean) can be identified and design directions can be designed and communicated.
A few of the great institutions that use
our design thinking methodology.