Whilst we are constantly connected by digital devices, we are making less meaningful connections, often increasing loneliness and anxiety. My Independent Project encourages people to re-communicate, increasing feelings of community.
Hyde Park, Leeds, is the focus for the project. As the student centre of the city it's a buzzing and social area, but the typical student lifestyle often disguises mental health issues and can put strain on the relationship between students and locals in the area.
The solution is HERE, a brand of 3 parts, all tied together by a mobile app:
1) Since We're Both HERE — prompting good old conversations
2) What Goes On HERE — celebrating and engaging with community
3) Wish You Were HERE — reviving postcards
Since We're Both HERE
This campaign prompts conversation within the Hyde Park area using simple binaries as conversation starters. Placing posters in spots where people commonly wait capitalises on the opportunity to have a chat, for example, at bus stops or when queuing.
The beer mat/coaster challenge uses the campaign concept encourages action by incentivising people with a drink deal. This simple object can be placed in any location serving drinks, making it relevant to both students and locals in a range of social spaces.
What Goes On HERE
2 print publications celebrating and uniting the Hyde Park community, sharing collated stories and notices submitted via the HERE app
A simple A6 booklet that folds out into a double sided sheet of A3. Printed with bright inks on recycled paper, it is a modern take on a traditional newspaper that is environmentally sustainable, as well as socially sustainable. Posted through every front door in the Hyde Park area, this acts as a local newsletter that modernises the existing dated community notice board. This helps create more of a dialogue between students and locals.
A collectable set of prints, contained in a timeless record sleeve-style pouch. The 3 parts inside contain a calendar of anecdotes, a selection of photographs and a map contextualising this content. It aims to celebrate real life, combining content from students as well as locals, whether this is day-to-day happenings or more exciting events.
Wish You Were HERE
Classic postcards found in public spaces across Leeds enable visitors to make a more physical connection with a friend. In addition to this, visits can be recorded all in one place via the HERE app by scanning a barcode in each location. This digital equivalent adds an extra dimension to traditional postcards to offer the instant-gratification expected from modern day audiences.
The app combines all 3 parts of the project, adding a new dimension that helps to blend traditional media with contemporary consumer interests. Whilst it is a digital platform, the in app prompts and location specific features still aim to encourage in person interactions. The app makes it easier for people to meet other like-minded people, both students and locals, acting as a tool for use in any public space.