StrangelyFamiliar is a web tool to rediscover “where you’re from”.
A place to fall in love with lost stories from your culture, to redefine and reinvent your heritage through modern artifacts with childlike curiosities. It is a place to reshape your reality.
The website is a learning device, showing you snippets of information based on filters the user toggles. If an artifact the user is reading about catches their eye, they can simply drop it in a collection drawer which stores their findings. From here, the user is free to experiment, mix-and-match three artifacts at a time; once happy with the blend of the design, they can choose what medium the print will be casted on and order the item. The whole interaction with this website is meant to be deeply personal.
The idea of my thesis came naturally– I’ve always wanted to visualize what an object would mean to myself when it represented every part of my respective cultures. Growing up I was never quite enough of one thing or too much of the other. This project allowed me to research and truly explore the concept of cultural integration and why it matters while combining technical skills such as 3D animation, UX/UI, handmaking and printmaking.
This portion of my portfolio will be set up as a process journal, a little divergent from the rest of my projects.
The project began with an immense amount of research as I used myself as a case study. (As well as a ridiculous amount of trial and error with coding and animation.)
After a few renditions of my website, I was very unsatisfied with the outcome. Instead, I was more interested in creating abstract forms that combined organic shapes from the Earth with textile patterns from various parts of the world. This idea would eventually shape up to be the driving force of the project.
With these new weird rock forms, I worked in reverse to re-design the entire look of the brand. My hand-drawn globes weren’t working for me so I used a math graphing program and scripted it to Photoshop to create my new globe, marrying it with the rock form idea.
My bloodstream was entirely fueled by coffee at this point.
And now it was time to curate and design all my artifacts from hours of scanning and researching and most begrudgingly... it was time to re-do the website with this new visual language and concept.