Sensory Abstraction


The objective for this project is to exemplify the design elements and principles through poster representing a sensory experience. The overall creation will incorporate both vector and raster tools, to communicate visuals about a common activity. It includes a 2 dimension graphic as well as a 3 Dimensional component. The composition abstracts details of the five sense apprehensible by the audience. Furthermore, it demonstrates a working knowledge of color theory.


Left- 30” x 30” Poster supported by foam core.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Right- Digital copy of design sent to printer


I built my design around the sensation of brushing one’s teeth as it is common and an easy reference for a range of people. Also, I enjoy brushing my teeth. Movement is a strong objective. I also express the transformation from dirty to clean. I went on to achieve this by having an organized chaos within my design. The blue is representational of the toothpaste; however, the different shades and tints of the same hues emphasize the transformation that from gross and dingy to light and clean. I use the darkest blue to push the sensation of the sharp mint cutting into one’s taste buds. I made the swirled shapes softer and less intense as they present the constant circular movement during the process. Lastly, the organic forms (originally plain white circles) were added into order to show the change in the toothpaste as it coats the teeth. I include the frames to present the viewer with the message of contained chaos. Notice how the patterns circle each other- this was done to remind the audience that this is a daily routine that is included in the cycle of most. The final adjustment of the perspective is intended  to prevent the design from being too static. Brushing teeth is a mindless, simple act, yet the toothbrush, paste, and water involved are in constant motion and transformation. The perspective makes it more dynamic and aware of this energy.


Documented above is the process that led to the final sensory abstraction. It began with a breakdown of what brushing teeth is to the senses. I formatted this in a mind map with a branch for every sense. I took these thoughts and sketched visuals for each sense (seen on the 3 scans on top right). These visuals were then digitalized and combined/ repeated. The new visuals provided the foundations for my fully completed design. The bottom right presents the two visuals I was deciding between to finalize. I appreciated the blue tint of the first layout, and it led to my decision to make the poster blue monochrome; however, I felt the second one had more content and depth.


After applying my pallet of blues, I began to interact with the shape and perspective of the design. The perfection of the circles detracted from the other organic shapes, so I revised the shapes to carry out similar sentiments. I sought to project the idea of routine in the composition, so I added frames within frames to say, “brushing teeth is a daily activity, trapped in a continuous cycle. The stiffness of the frame was then adjusted through warping the perspective; thus referencing the instability of the water and elevating the sense of movement.


The design is enhance by adding layered components to the limb of organic shapes on the top right. This presents the feeling being apart of the person, but also an external substance.





For more about the process for the Sensory Abstraction Project follow this link: