A new way to connect the photographs that matter most to us with the stories we wish to preserve.
Status: Capstone project design school
Photos can begin to lose their value in a digital space where a single photo is one among thousands; their meaning can become more diluted. How can we preserve the value we have attached to the print photos we keep, and capture the shared stories we connect with these memories?
Patina bridges the gap between old and new media, providing a more meaningful and permanent way for people to interact with their most cherished photos. With this tablet app, you can add meaning to both digital and print photos, by connecting memories, stories, and other associated photos to create a more detailed memory of an experience.
uncovering meaning in photos
By breaking down a photograph and looking at what sorts of memories it triggers, I was able see how the way we interact with digital photos leaves two of the most compelling pieces out: the stories and the associations we connect to a memory. This thinking drove my creation of three different types of small collections you can create around a particular photo. With the different collections you can connect associated photos, other peoples' photos of the same experience, or instances of the same experience over time. Each of these collections connected to a photo only includes five other photos, which encourages people to be selective and chose the most meaningful photos to tell and share their stories.
Family and friends can embed stories directly in a photo and then, by looking at that photo’s timeline, see who else has ‘touched’ it over time. The collective memory of a photo grows and evolves. Individual photos are organized into small collections. This process of being selective and choosing photos that we really connect with allows for the capture of a richer, more complete memory, and pulls that photo out of the digital masses and into relevancy.
It all began with a research question: how do people experience and share memories over time? I specifically focused on holidays and family traditions because this is often a time when family members gather, especially those of different generations. I interviewed ten people and found threads across the interviews, leading to my interest in sharing memories through photographs. I then started to dig into photos and the types of memories we embed within them, focusing on how this is different in print and digital photos. After many sketches, concepts, and critiques, I narrowed down to the final direction of Patina, directed the shots for the video, and built the animations for the final video in Apple Motion.