Week 10

Tuesday 11/12
In Class
  • Designer Presentations

    1. Jen Christiansen
    2. Fernando Gomez Baptista
    3. Wendy MacNaughton
    4. Rocco Piscatello
  • Finalize Infographic based on feedback and submit.
  • Reading:
  • Phase 1 Project 2

Research & Concept

Building the Concept and Drafting the Design

The goal of this Phase is to figure out what information you have and how to best present it. The goal of your InfoGraphic should be too:

  • Enhance comprehension of complex concepts
  • Strengthen the persuasiveness of claims (Here is a good article to read)
  • Make key insights more memorable
Finalize Your Content
  • Your poster should have one main focused thesis:
    • What’s the core message?
    • What’s the main question being answered?
  • Organize you content into a clear outline
  • Use bullet points to organize details for each section
  • Gather the right data to support your thesis.
References and Inspiration materials
  • Pintrest – create a board for yourself of inspiring examples
  • Gather images from a variety of sources that help to inspire and guide you.

Develop concept and refine sketches(charts and graphs)

  1. Create at least 10 sketches of your layout and related ideas
  2. Read through your data – what will be the most clear way to visualize your data.
      • Inform: convey a single important message or data point that doesn’t require much context to understand
        (Big Number, Donut Chart, Pictogram)
      • Compare: show similarities or differences among values or parts of a whole (Bar Chart, Bubble Chart, Pie Chart, Stacked Bar Chart, Bubble Cloud, TreeMap, Word Cloud)
      • Show Change: visualize trends over time or space
        (Line Chart, Area Chart, Timeline, Map Chart)
      • Organize: show groups, patterns, rank or order
        (Lists, Flow Chart, Mind Map, Pyramid Diagram, Table, Ordered Bar Chart
      • Reveal Relationships: show correlations among variables or values
        (Scatter Plot, Histogram, Multi-Series Chart)
  3. Each sketch should have a clear border around it in proportion to the actual final piece (in this case vertical 11″x17″). Sketches of course can be smaller.
  4. Sketches should give you a sense the of the space you are working with and show how you might organize the content to fit. Reference your outline from your content document. Work within a grid.
Typeface Selection

Carefully select 2 typeface you would like to work with for your project. Do your research and show your research.

  • Study the typefaces available to you in the FONT folder on the computers in class
  • Choose two different typefaces that compliment each other, perhaps a serif and a sans serif
  • Try to choose typefaces that come with a large variety of of fonts: Light, Condensed, Heavy, Extended, etc.

Collecting Data

Tips for finding Data Online through Search Engines

Google has a bunch of advanced functions that can help your find data and/or documents quickly.

  1. Here are some tips specific to search engines. You can use the operators discussed below and combine them to further drill down:
    • Search for specific phrases with quotes “”
      Ex “NYC Schools and Lead in Water”
    • Add “data” to a search:
      Ex “NYC Schools and Lead in Water data”
    • Exclude search words with a hyphen
    • Search for something either/or with OR
      Ex: Lead in Water 1990 OR 2018
    • Find Websites that are similar to others by using related
      Ex: “Related:LeadInWater”
  2. Type in a search topic together with ‘data’ and see what comes up under the image search.
  3. Search only with a certain domain by using site “site url: topic”
    Ex: “nyc.gov: Lead in water site”
  4. Search for a specific filetype:xls (or xlsx,csv or pdf)
    Ex: “Lead in water filetype:pdf”
  5. You can use this to find data or documents from specific agencies:
    Ex: Lead in water filetype:doc site:nyc.gov
  6. You can find out more on google: google.com/advanced_search
  7. Use existing data repositories: (Many of them have limited functionality (for sorting/filtering) but you can easily download data:
  8. Sites to search for academic research:
Tips for collecting and saving Information
  • Create a text document. Copy and paste all related links to where you have gathered content from
  • Save a clean copy of your data and content
  • Keep track of your work. Save edited versions under new name. Ex: ‘ContentHitchings-V1.doc,’ ‘ContentHitchings-V2.doc’
  • Keep careful records of your sources
  • Set up a spread sheet in Excel. Create categories for different data types.
  • Keep track of your work. Save edited versions under new name. Ex: ‘ContentHitchings-V1.xls,’ ‘ContentHitchings-V2.xls’

Week 03


Tuesday 09/10/19

  • 2 graphs in illustrator based on class lecture and collected data. We will review and edit today. Please save your work as a PDF, into the class Google folder, with your name on it: Week3-Homework
  • Collected Data: Link to Class Spreadsheet
  • Finish Graphs
  • The CUNY Innovation Challenge: Direct Effect Innovation Challenge
    The COMD department is hosting on Saturday, September 21st (9-5PM). We are teaming up with the US Postal Service in hosting this event. There will be two clients and the ideas/work produced by the different teams will be judged by representatives from the industry. We have invited 7 other design schools to send teams to compete to come up with ideas for a client’s integrated marketing campaign. 
  • Decide on topic for Info Graphic
  • Research topic. Find at least three resources with relevant data.

Charts & Data Overview


1. Lines: Continuous Data

Temperature (70º 90ºF)
Stock market prices ($8 $9)
Weight (90 120 lbs)
Age (30-40 years old)

2. Bars: Categorical Data (Distinct Data)

– Countries (USA, Russia, China)
– Beetles (LadyBug Beetle, Japanese Beetle, Dung Beetle)
– Colors (Pink, Purple)


View Poster With Examples
1. Lines

Examples – a quick google images search: Line Charts

  • Classic form
  • Show trends
  • Good for comparing over time
  • Continuous data

–> Common mistakes: Unnecessary legends, 3D, correlations not causation

2. Bars

A quick google images search: Bar Charts

  • Classic form
  • Precise comparisons
  • Distinct data

–> Common mistakes: Non zero baselines, random ordering of items

3. Bubble & Pie

Examples – a quick google images search: Pie Charts & Bubble Charts

  • Parts of a Whole
  • Use sparingly

–> Common mistakes: Too many pieces in a pie chart, complex legends, Not adding to 100%


4. Scatterplot

A scatter plot (also called a scatterplot, scatter graph, scatter chart, scattergram, or scatter diagram) is a type of plot or mathematical diagram using Cartesian coordinates to display values for typically two variables for a set of data. If the points are coded (color/shape/size), one additional variable can be displayed. The data are displayed as a collection of points, each having the value of one variable determining the position on the horizontal axis and the value of the other variable determining the position on the vertical axis. (wikipedia)

Examples – a quick google images search: Scatterplot Charts

  • Showing relationships
  • Individual data points

–>Common mistakes: Drawing dubious conclusions, Not adding a trend line

5. Treemaps & Sunbursts

Treemaps display hierarchical (tree-structured) data as a set of nested rectangles. Each branch of the tree is given a rectangle, which is then tiled with smaller rectangles representing sub-branches. A leaf node’s rectangle has an area proportional to a specified dimension of the data. Often the leaf nodes are colored to show a separate dimension of the data. (wikipedia)

Examples – a quick google images search: Treemap Charts

  • Parts of a whole
  • Complex divisions

Read more here about Treemaps & Sunburst Charts

6. Waffle

Waffle Charts, also called Square charts, are a form of pie charts that use squares instead of circles  to represent percentages.

Examples – a quick google images search: Waffle Charts

  • Parts of a whole
  • Showing composition
7. Small Multiples

A small multiple (sometimes called trellis chart, lattice chart, grid chart, or panel chart) is a series of similar graphs or charts using the same scale and axes, allowing them to be easily compared. It uses multiple views to show different partitions of a dataset. The term was popularized by Edward Tufte. (wikipedia)

Examples – a quick google images search: Small Multiple Charts

  • Repetition
  • Compare small changes
8. Maps & Cartograms

A Map chart allows us to visualize spatial relationships in data by indicating data on a geographical map. There are two main types: 1. Geographical Points and 2 Geographical Areas. (wikipedia)

A cartogram chart is a map in which some thematic mapping variable – such as travel time, population, or GNP – is substituted for land area or distance. The geometry or space of the map is distorted, sometimes extremely, in order to convey the information of this alternate variable. (wikipedia)

Examples – a quick google images search: Map Charts & Cartogram Charts

  • Geographic information
  • Place & Location is important
  • Compare countries/states/cities

Read more here about Cartogram Charts