This documents an on-going collaboration between a graphic design researcher, Dr Gill Brown, and the Centre for Neuroimaging Sciences at King’s College London, instigated by Dr Mattia Veronese.
The initial phase of the collaboration started in May 2017, lasting approximately 15 months and contributing to Gill’s PhD research at University of the Arts London (London College of Communication). The aim was to understand the issues involved when producing scientific conceptual figures and to suggest means of addressing them, while bearing in mind the conventions and restrictions associated with visual communication within scientific peer groups.
During the initial phase, the collaboration worked on:
- An online gallery of visual elements, linked to a library of high resolution image files and editable Adobe Illustrator files. These elements are specifically designed to be easily adapted and refined by the scientists themselves, who can include or remove details, and add text and annotation, to create bespoke conceptual figures.
- Pilot workshops, to give hands-on instruction in the use of Adobe Illustrator, with emphasis on the creation and editing of visual elements for use in conceptual figures.
In May 2019, the collaboration was awarded funding by the Health Science Doctoral Training Centre at KCL to create workshops on Graphic Design for Scientific Figures. These were designed specifically for research scientists in the Health Faculties, and used extensively updated material from the pilot workshops of 2017. These workshops took place in January / February 2020 and are documented on the Workshops (2020/21) webpage. The training materials used in the workshops are now available online to postgraduate research students in the King’s Health Faculties, via the King’s E-learning Training Service (KEATS) website. An introductory video to the workshops, featuring a conversation between Drs Gill Brown and Mattia Veronese, can be viewed by anyone via this external King’s webpage.
Two online sessions, covering the material from Workshop 2 (Practice), were held in early December 2020. Due to demand, four more sessions are being run in May / June 2021, with details posted on the Workshops (2020/21) webpage.
In June 2020, the collaboration was awarded funding by the Wellcome EPSRC Centre for Medical Engineering (CME) Public Engagement Grant Scheme, to create a visual, modular Patient Information Sheet (PIS) for PET / MRI imaging studies. More details about this project can be found on the PIS project webpage and work on the project is fully documented on the website blog. The results of the project are being publicised over the summer of 2021 and an example of a modular PIS can be seen, and downloaded as a pdf file, from this webpage.