Parsons School of Design

BFA Communication Design

Thesis 2013

Lauren Hodges
Project Empathy
Lauren Hodges
Project Empathy

Project Empathy is a year-long exploration of the most successful ways to visually communicate empathy to young adults ages 12–15. My interest in this topic came from my personal lack of empathy in middle school and later, in high school, where I saw the error of my ways. I consider myself very lucky to have seen the signs and listened to teachers who repeated the Golden Rule of, ‘always treat others the way you would like to be treated.’ In current events, the horrifying trend of mass shootings that have taken place in Newtown, Aurora, Fort Hood, Virginia Tech, and Columbine makes this need evident. The reasons for this lack of empathy are up for debate, but what is certain is that it needs to be increased. Initially my forms of communication began as of a series of print advertisements utilizing illustration and text. Through further research and surveying people in this age group, I came to the conclusion that video would be the best medium to explore in order to communicate my message. My final deliverable evolved into three stop-motion videos narrated to original poems, while using reductive graphic language to promote ideas of empathy.


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