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behaVR

App Design + Branding

 
 

behaVR

App Design + Branding

Brief:

A self-initiated, App Design + Branding project that helps autistic teens and young adults be in crowded social spaces. This project was made for Daniel, an incredibly gifted and loving teen with autism.  

 
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An app that helps teens and young adults with autism be in crowded social spaces.

 

Autism. What is it?

A complex developmental disability that effects the ability to interact and communicate with others; a “spectrum condition” that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees.

-Autism Society

It's also, Daniel.

A 14 year old artist that loves memorizing movie lines, wearing comfy clothes, the color green, pizza, Snapchat filters, magic, and going to the movies when they're not crowded with people.

 
 

Observations:

For 14 years, I've gotten to learn and understand the affects that autism has on young people. Although the autism spectrum is incredibly big, there are certain things that affect a vast majority of autistic teens and young adults; crowded social spaces.

Challenge:

Create an app with a special VR feature that teens and young adults with autism can use when they are feeling overwhelmed and anxious in social crowded spaces.

 

Main Objective:

Help autistic teens + young adults have a social life like anyone else.

Target Audience:

Autistic teens + young adults ages 13-21


 
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Variable Solution

Behavior, the strongest component affected in teens and young adults with autism. BehaVR an app that uses a unique, people disappearing, VR feature that allows teens and young adults with autism spectrum disorder be in social crowded spaces.

 

 

How it was made:

 
 

 

How it works:

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The App:

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Simple, Calming Design

behaVR is meant to add zero anxiety for the user, so there is minimal information that the user needs to process. Icons will accompany text to be more recognizable, and the user will have a chance to access the VR magic without the worry of having to login first.

VR effect a.k.a the Magic:

 

As soon as users hit "go" on their screen, they will immediately be able to use their camera to make people around them disappear. Distractions are some of the number one things that can help autistic teens and young adults from feeling anxious and overwhelmed. 

Not to mention, because autistic people are so literal, referring to anything that seems like magic is guaranteed to be a positive distraction in their eyes.

 
 
“It’s hard to know exactly what will work for autistic kids because the spectrum is so high, but distractions are what’s most important in helping them change their state of mind.”

-Ms. Christensen, Harris Middle School, San Antonio, TX, Special Education Lead
 

The calm zone

 

The calm zone is a second distraction method that will help the user mentally remove themselves from the physical (crowded) space they're in. Calming photos that allow the users to escape will show on the screen.

They will have the ability to search for desired photos and to click on a photo of their choice to enlarge it and proceed through others. 

 
 
“It would be nice to help take them to a different place that would calm them down.”

-Ms. Christensen, Harris Middle School, San Antonio, TX, Special Education Lead
 
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Color Palette

The color palette was chosen based off of colors that are calming, and natural. Based off of research, green and shades of neutral greens are calming and anxiety-reducing for young people.

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Typography

Montserrat was chosen because of its large, spaced out letter forms that compliment the space that autistic teens and young adults like to be in. 


Thought Process:

 

The first thought going into this was all about Daniel, my brother. It then evolved into research, an interview with a special education teacher, more research, and a lot of love. Here are the behind the scenes to the behaVR thought process: