Digital works

Nerd facts: On last Valentine’s Day (2017)

Every month have a particular celebration, or as I like to call it “a nice excuse to create a graphic”.

February is a love and music month, so a month earlier I started planning to create a way to visualise the language thought music, I have to admit that the SCMP is very open mind to explore new ways to tell stories or even just experiments like this…

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Speech spectrum of “I Love You”, the red dots are my key points to make a new sound.

Anyway, the idea came while I watched the spectrum of a voice record; there I began to think what if the instruments can be adapted to languages, how can sound a phrase of an instrument in Spanish, French, German, Chinese… and, if already some instruments have particular sound linked to a particular culture and language.

I started by adding key points to phrases like “I love you” in different languages, and then I should try to explain that to musicians, editors and partners (that does not goes very well at the beginning), but after many sketches they got the idea and the process began.

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Sounds synthesized from voice recordings

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Synthetized instruments spectrum

I create a few concepts for this graphics before get the final data using Google translate, with the inspector tool I catch the speech, then I create a new sound with synthetizers, and back to the visuals again to work with an approximate spectrum.

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Google translate, voice render.

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Visual layouts for the project.

The results were interesting, so next we make records of some people speaking in the final selected languages (English, Spanish, French and Cantonese) that suppose to be reference point to the musician, but we didn’t use his interpretations because the deadline was approaching and he don’t send us the files on time. So at the end the instrumental interpretations were made by synthetizers. If you are interested in learn more about the making of the sound, visit to the special feature and tap on “How it works”

Take a look in to the project:
http://multimedia.scmp.com/culture/article/valentine/#

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Awards

SND harvest 2016-2017

Few days ago the Society for News Design release the final results of a new cycle of recognition of the best in digital and print design for News all over the world, newsrooms from the five continents celebrates the new year with the ceremony of selection to get the best of the latest year… how exciting months!

This is my harvest of awards at the SND edition 38, I guess reflects a year of changes between two newsrooms like a split of me:

The digital awards

The first results of the SND are the digital works. This time a Silver Medal was awarded to my project “Memoria Robada” from my former work-team at La Nacion -Costa Rica-, the story was planed to show a visual report of the stolen heritage of Costa Rica.

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SND38 Silver medal, La Nacion -Costa Rica-. Launch the feature here.

The next four projects are the result of my first months at the new home here in Hong Kong working in the South China Morning Post at the graphics team. There are The Global Rule of Law, The Hong Kong Aging Population, Bolts from the Blue and USAsian Vote. All four with awards of excellence.

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The Print results

Is nice to have some awarded graphics in this category because my work is not focused in print. On 2016 I make about 6 versions of my digital project in to a print version, “Moving out” was a breaking news project about the Brexit, that project collects two awards of excellence.

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Moving Out

Combination print-digital

I got two awards in this category, the first one for a project about an intense lightening night here in Hong Kong, and the second for the explanation of the China´s Cities organization in which I made the digital version and Marcelo Duhalde the print one.

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Lightening project on print version

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Lightening project on digital version

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China City Tiers, digital version.

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Digital works

Nerd facts: The Rule of Law World Index

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Rendered view of the World rank of rule of law 2016

This is a project based in data of the “World Justice Project Rule Of Law Index, 2016″ by the SCMP infographics team. Our goal was to show the information in a simply visual interactive tool, to give our readers also a perspective of Hong Kong and the world overview.

This was a very fast-build graphic, the idea was to show the world rank moving up and down from the last year to this year and also a visual report of each country/region.

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Country report assets. The graphic is generated by json data thought js, this svg assets are rotated, scaled and positioned according the country data.

This graphic is a combination of css, svg, js, and json data. But only uses 8 files of a simply vector shape, so load very fast. The main idea was to give a comparison tool, to view the countries of interest side-by-side but also their position related to other countries in the region, that is the irregular shape, according to the scale, the average of each of the 7 regions is added via js to every country.

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Seven region average index layers

The graphics evolved to an more effective visual representation, in my work is usual to create at less five previous concepts, from data reports like excel pivot tables to paper concepts and finally to vector graphics. The most effective way to show the data, some times come on the fifth or seventh iteration, but is the best way to create some informative and usable infographic.

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Early concepts for the Rule of Law global index

 

Also, maybe thats the reason of some mistakes in the data, text or color codes in this images, the building up of this graphics always have the main ideas to guide the next versions, so it needs the text and visuals in more than simply Lorem Ipsum

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First version of the index change (2015-2016)

Hope you enjoy the graphic story, please take a look in to the final version here: http://multimedia.scmp.com/news/world/article/rule-of-law/

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Digital works

Project: Land of Giants

A few months ago I start this project about the tallest statues in the world. My intention was to show in someway the tallest structures without the noise and distortion of pictures. I love photos, but for this things is really hard to get a full picture of structures from different countries in the same conditions, so the solution was to make drawings of more than hundred statues around the world.

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Illustrator process, fist stage.

The Gutenberg project has a collection of tall statues from all over the world, that was my first source, but a corroboration of each of the 125 statues founded was just the begging. High resolution images of reference, hours of google earth to get a location in a interactive pop up map, data of completion, theme, date of build start… When all those data facts was corroborated 98 statues was the result of two months of investigation (not at full time of course).

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Every country section has a sort information about the statues located there, but also is popup launcher for an interactive map.

I start the drawings in Illustrator, on the maximum canvas size to be sure to capture many details as posible, then I move to photoshop in layered document for each group of statues by country, day and day of drawings almost make me crazy but at the end I trust the result will be nice.

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Statues drawing and painting process

Even on a spread page on the SCMP the print version will never be enough to fit all the 98statues with all this data, this project born on digital but also was required a print version, so I take China -the top country builder- and the local Hong Kong statues, some facts around the graphic are only in the print version because the idea was to make it complementary rather than same graphic in different platform.

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Print version of the statues project

This project shows the statues grouped by country, from the top quantity country to a group of only one statue per country, but also has interactive maps and a little things like the rank in the bottom, you can click each and the page will scroll to the statue position.

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This are the images used for the world rank, 98 in total

It was a very long project, but not the last one. Hope you can enjoy all version of this project (Print, Desktop and Mobile) all of them different, take a look at the main project here:

http://bit.ly/2iBbwPH

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Digital works

Nerd facts: Asian American population

US elections are coming and here in Hong Kong we want to see it from an Asian perspective. Some weeks ago I start this project to collect the data of Asians in US and visualize it.

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The map in first instance is nothing more than a choropleth map, I start from a black map as the one in the top, then one by one I manually add a grey value in five clusters, white for 0% and so on to +25% as the dark grey.

The US Census Bureau has a very specific data for Asians in US, but I use data also from the APIA and AAJC Asian organizations in US as well, the research phase takes me about a week, producing the graphics and coding it was about four days, and about an other week making edits and corroborating each small graphic and each word in the special feature. I must highlight that this graphic was not just a map, each state in the US has a detail of text and graphics so it was not ease to check, edit and revise.

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Early version of the country over view. As you may note, beyond color the elevation is different, my first data set was for total population instead of percent of the population

The map was generated with Cinema 4D, based on a grey scale county map, then styled with Illustrator and photoshop and coded with Brackets io trough SVG, Jquery, JS…

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The color code is very important because the position of camera will change in perspective, so the color make easier to visually determinate the height of each area no matter the position. In the following image the camera position affect the way we perceive the height of the counties, just because the matter of point of view, but when color is on… well, see your self:

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Brown means Asian population over 25% in the specific county (as well the height), I call that to perceive data in multidimensional ways, but keep it understandable

The position of cameras will change for each state, as for the videos and other sections using the specific portions of the map to tell different stories.

Following the 3D idea, the complementary graphics was also generated in C4D and the layout phase begin.

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Some graphics display scroll-trigged video on desktop versions, then for mobile switch for static renders because IOS don’t allow autoplay videos or video out side the native player

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This is one of the city spinners, all of them uses an image like this, is positioned by the mouse drag final position and makes the 3d effect

Hope you as reader enjoy the project much as I enjoy to make it, please visit the special feature here http://multimedia.scmp.com/news/world/AsianAmerican/

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Digital works

Nerd facts about China’s Cities classification project

Here is some of the work progress behind the China Cities project, released last week at scmp.com the first thing was the idea on a quick draft:

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Concept layout for the special feature at scmp.com

This infographic about the China’s Cities classification was made must as a simply data graphic, it loads .json data for each city in to an html-svg graphic. All the 613 cities loads very fast, maybe the most heavy piece of this special feature is the China county map.

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This is the look of each city behind the graphic

The map of China was no ease to make, on that level of detail seems is not available public any where so from a Chinese cartographer library I get a non labeled county map, well not in english at less, so for the next 3 days I spend my time looking for each county division corroborating and adding names to specific regions of this new vector map of China.

The map has 4 different configurations for each county, sounds like a few but actually that means 4x 613 different counties to check because China counties English map doesn’t exist here so two days more of checking added.
Then was time for fist section, the simplest graphics but the first ones that people will see, this graphics will show what’s a tier and how China’s cities are sorted in to:

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As a summary this project take a 7 days of my life hahahah, but it was funny take a look in to the final product here: http://multimedia.scmp.com/2016/cities/

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Digital works

Hong Kong’s ageing population

A few days ago this project about the ageing population goes live at scmp.com

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Here is a lot of information to explore, the interactive special feature have plus 40 years of population forecast for Hong Kong, there, you can explore how the population will be conformed for the next years a how will be getting older and older.

Usually I don’t use or make much illustration by my self, but I been losing fear about, I have the intention to use illustration to make a balance of the serious and hard data-viz.

Take a look in to the project trough this link http://multimedia.scmp.com/2016/ageing/ comments always welcome.

 

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