Author Archives: christianarvidsson

Censorship for Sam





Erotic pics for the blind

I won’t be including this in my Visual Summary, but felt I had to share it anyway. 🙂 Hope nobody’s offended by it, and apologies if so.. let me know, and I’ll censor it.

Playboy in braille

Soldier for Nadav

Soldier made up of numerous little plastic soldiers glued on a base, airbrushed in different colours and shades, making up the picture.

For Taro – Visualising music

On the dot.


Braille has a close and obvious relationship to the sense of touch. And it is something that wants to catch everyone’s attention, whether you can read it or not, through the inviting tactility of the raised dots and the pattern it seems to create. But the meaning of it is lost on most people, as it looks like a language of its own and excludes the ones who can’t read it. And so – and maybe rightly so, in the name of ‘equality’ – the tables have been turned.

What does braille mean to the blind? How does it work, how is it used and where is it to be found? Is it enriching to their lives in general, or just a simple tool to absorb information the rest of us read as written text? What role does the materials used play?

My project aim is to find out how braille and three dimensional shapes can be used in creating graphics meant primarily for blind and partially sighted people – not necessarily excluding the rest of the population, but which would mean that if they wanted to get the full meaning, they would have to take a closer look at it and understanding a bit about its function. And I also want to use the pattern like qualities of braille to draw attention to it from the sighted audience and in doing so, give an insight to its importance to people living with this disability.

Whether my final outputs will be functional or more playful, decorative applications remains to be seen.


Two ideas from the peer group sessions:

Investigate how everyday shopping can be for the blind. How a shelf in a food store would look like if the packaging would be suited primarily for the blind; if all cereal cartons were white, with raised line drawings and raised dots for the text.

Create a kind of hybrid alphabet, where letters and braille letters are combined. Could be used in the ‘how-to’ manual for teaching sighted people to read braille.

Major Project development

Added a new category for the group to use for posts regarding Unit 3 – Major Project.

On the dot (MPP)

Had forgotten to post this. Found it still saved as a draft..


In what way can braille and 3D shapes be used to form graphics and patterns that are intriguing to sighted people as well as blind or partially sighted?


The target audience will be blind or visually impaired also people in the gen- eral public who would enjoy my experiments and want to get a fuller under- standing of braille and its uses.


– To raise people’s awareness of braille, what it’s for and draw attention to its importance to the blind society. As many people are only ‘exposed’ to braille in only a few instances in everyday life – on buttons in lifts, buses and cash points – and thereby don’t get the full impact of how valuable it can be to people with this disability. (Even if people know of it, they don’t have any real knowledge about it.)

– How can we move toward inclusive design – to take the visually impaired into consideration when designing, instead of it only being added as an afterthought due to legal requirements.

– Investigate how graphics can be created in ways that appeals to a hybrid audience of sighted and blind/partially sighted people. Analyse which approach(es) can be best applied.


– Exploring ways of expressing braille in different formats – Differences in braille grade 1 and 2
Also investigate scaling of dots, spaces between dots and braille cells

– How is society accommodating or excluding blind people in everyday life?
Signage systems and guides for the visually impaired. How braille is being implemented in today’s society.

– Graphics/art intended for the blind
Tactile 3D shapes and patterns

– Embossed graphics, raised line drawings
Graphics to be ‘read’ with touch

– Comparison between situation in the UK and Sweden – Grades of blindness – Moon writing – Experiences with less senses
Other senses (mainly touch) heightened when loss of sight?

– How different concepts are percieved by blind
Such as ‘beauty’, colours, etc.


– Research existing graphic examples intended for blind and partially sighted

– Create an ‘how-to’ manual for sighted people to learn or understand braille

– Contact RNIB

– Find and talk to designers who have worked on projects in the same or similar field of study (f.ex. the design studio Imagination’s “Sense Garden”)

– Exhibitions about tactile graphics?
Find and attend exhibitions exploring tactile graphics/puts emphasis on art explored with other senses than sight

– Search for blind or partially sighted artists and photographers

– Create graphics with focus and extra value for the non-sighted (as in the ones with knowledge of braille)

– Surfaces of different textues and materials used for graphic work for the blind. Sounding when touching graphics?


– Holiday
– More primary research; create more visual experiments
Also more ‘playful’ approaches, not only problem solving (to be included in the ‘how-to’ manual?)
– More secondary research of graphics and installations
– Read books about blind and graphics from the bibliography
– Look up and visit exhibitions
‘Touch Tour’ for the visually impaired at the V&A for example

– More primary research
– More secondary research of graphic work and art for the blind
– Contact RNIB and blind/partially sighted people
Regarding what could be valuable factors to take into consideration when forming the research and ask what they would see as a welcome/’valuable’ addition to art and graphics, what they might feel is missing
– Think of formats for final output
– Speak to designers and others with experience of projects in the same/ similar fieldRNIB might have examples of projects or contacts
– Tutor meetings/feedback

– Trip to Sweden
During stay – find out differences between Sweden and the UK for the blind and braille’s uses
– Show target audience examples of work – Amends to work after feedback – Tutor meetings/feedback

– Design layout templates for MP and visual experiments
– Tutor meetings/feedback

– Use 3D workshop and Print Studio for production of material
– Photograph experiments
– Set material in layout template
– Tutor meetings/feedback

– Liaise with printers about production
– Print MP and other parts
– 9/11/11 HAND-IN Major Project


For Blind and Braille
– Crow, David (2010) Visible Signs, 2ed Lausanne: AVA Publishing SA

– Edman, Polly K (1992) Tactile Graphics New York: Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
– Frascara, Jorge (1997) User-centred graphic design London: Taylor & Francis
– Holmes, David (2005) Empire of the Senses New York: Berg Publishers
– Kennedy, John M (1993) Drawing and the Blind: pictures to touch Yale University
– Pullin, Graham (2009) Design meets disability Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

– –

For Research Methodology
– Kress, Gunther & van Leeuwen, Theo (1996) Reading Images – The Grammar of Graphic Design London: Routledge
– Laurel, Brenda (2003) Design Research – Methods and Perspectives Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Hands on

I want to look at different ways people use their hands in communication, especially in the aspect of disabilities; how the deaf use sign language and blind or people with impaired vision use their hands not only to read braille but also ‘see’ images with their fingers by touching pictures that are embossed and layered.

I am tempted to go straight to sign language and create an introduction book an with more coherent illustrations that explains signs, how to shape and move your hands when signing. The courses I’ve attended in this subject have all had different teachers and all with their own hand drawn pictures, which was sometimes confusing as they drew the same word’s illustration very differently. I think they would benefit from a more unified look.

There are more deaf and hard of hearing people in the society than we realise and they face many difficulties in their everyday life, things hearing people take for granted. My idea was to maybe create a book which could work as a first glance at learning how to sign for schools.

But I would be limiting the field of research quite early in that case, so therefore want to broaden the theme and will include other things as well and see where it leads me.

So bad it’s even been on the news and soon also in the movies

Helvetica, the movie

Maybe something for us to watch?

“Overlong but fascinating, Mr. Hustwit’s documentary posits Helvetica — a sans-serif typeface developed in 1957 at the Haas Foundry in Munchenstein, Switzerland — as an emblem of the machine age, a harbinger of globalization and an ally of modern art’s impulse toward innovation, simplicity and abstraction. Its versatility is showcased in shots of storefronts, street signs, public transportation systems, government forms, advertisements and newspaper vending boxes.”