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Chinese History Infographic Book by Yanwen Hu

Home > Winners > Design #54166 >Interview
Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Yanwen Hu (YH) for A' Design Awards and Competition. You can access the full profile of Yanwen Hu by clicking here. Access more information about the award winning design Chinese History here.



Interview with Yanwen Hu at Tuesday 23rd of May 2017

FS: What is the main principle, idea and inspiration behind your design?
YH: The idea came from a research project in the college history class: there were so many written papers about Chinese history, but there was no infographic presenting the history in a visual way. Inspired by traditional Chinese landscape paintings, the project intends to present the beauty of history as an artwork, which goes beyond line graphs and bubble maps.

FS: What has been your main focus in designing this work? Especially what did you want to achieve?
YH: This book is a new information system visualizing 5000 Years of Chinese history. By analyzing the outstanding historical contributions, including politics, philosophy, arts, science and technology, the book visually presents the relationships among those realms. The traditional watercolor painting is an artistic visualization based on the real history data, which represents the history in an authentic and expressive way.

FS: How long did it take you to design this particular concept?
YH: Almost one year.

FS: Why did you design this particular concept? Was this design commissioned or did you decide to pursuit an inspiration?
YH: I am always interested in History, but it is hard to get a big picture of it by reading books.

FS: Is your design being produced or used by another company, or do you plan to sell or lease the production rights or do you intent to produce your work yourself?
YH: The project's first version is designed in 2011 and later exhibited in First China University Book Design Exhibition in Beijing. The book's second version has been revised and made in 2014.

FS: What made you design this particular type of work?
YH: The three parts of the book (top, middle, and bottom) can be open and fold individually. Readers can experience the full context of history by spreading out the book to be a long piece painting, or just focus on a specific period by opening the page of that dynasty.

FS: Where there any other designs and/or designers that helped the influence the design of your work?
YH: Professor Jingren Lu is the advisor of this book design.

FS: Who is the target customer for his design?
YH: People are interested in Chinese History.

FS: What sets this design apart from other similar or resembling concepts?
YH: The scale of information included and the visual representation.

FS: How did you come up with the name for this design? What does it mean?
YH: Its Chinese name is 《中华国运山河图》. "山河" means "mountains and rivers," my metaphors in the visualization, also means "country."

FS: Which design tools did you use when you were working on this project?
YH: Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, Watercolor painting, Paper Sketch.

FS: What is the most unique aspect of your design?
YH: Attempt to use visual language to represent the uncountable data about history.

FS: Who did you collaborate with for this design? Did you work with people with technical / specialized skills?
YH: It is a solo design project.

FS: Is your design influenced by data or analytical research in any way? What kind of research did you conduct for making this design?
YH: The research process took more than one year. Collected from the research in the field of ancient Chinese history, the main storyline follows the chronology of its 24 dynasties. Additionally, the project's details have been developed by analyzing academic papers focusing on each dynasty.

FS: What are some of the challenges you faced during the design/realization of your concept?
YH: There are three challenges of this project: 1.collecting and sorting the vast amount of historical data; 2. building a structure that can present the relationships among multiple knowledge areas; 3. transforming the abstract structure to an artistic traditional Chinese painting framework.


FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.

A' Design Award and Competitions grants rights to press members and bloggers to use parts of this interview. This interview is provided as it is; DesignPRWire and A' Design Award and Competitions cannot be held responsible for the answers given by participating designers.

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