This Road – Shawn Yap

ABOUT THE PROJECT

The main inspiration for this project came from the double spiral motifs found in South-East Asia. Symbolically representing the intercommunication between opposing forces, I related the double spirals to our fingerprints -marks of our individuality. Very much like the meaning behind the double spirals, the uniqueness of our fingerprints are a metaphor of our co-existence with each other, despite being very different in terms of our intrinsic traits.

With the fingerprint as my main focus, i decided to make my work an exploration of the human identity. Society has become ignorant of the consequences that their actions have. The idea of the individual and focus on self has cast aside the fact that our identities are also formed by our actions and how they affect people.

Therefore the aim of the project is to create a greater awareness that we are what we choose to do (choice and consequence); our identities are made unique by our actions and choices. With it, I hope to make people think more about what kind of mark (fingerprint) they’ll want to leave on this Earth.

WHY “THIS ROAD” ?

The title “This Road” serves 2 purposes: it represents a choice made (The pathways we take in life), and also questions the wisdom behind it (Why not that road? Or the other road?)

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

To achieve the project’s aim, I will construct a fingerprint maze with branching outcomes from a myriad of choices made at the many junctions found inside. With every choice made, the participants will be able to see the immediate outcome of his choice at the next junction. At the end of his journey, the participants will be able to view the outcome of the choices he/she has made and see for themselves how it has impacted others, after which, he/she would be given an option of either living with their choices or backtracking to make new ones.

PROJECT DELIVERABLES

The project will have the following deliverables:

  • The Logo
  • The Invite
  • The Traveler’s pack
  • The Fingerprint maze

THE LOGO

The decision to make the logo a container logo is to adhere to the theme of choice prevalent in the project. By making it a container, the different elements of the logo can be used together or separately, in a variety of combinations and colors. The use of different aims to expand the number of visual choices the viewer can make – as he/she can now take different colors as well, instead of just choice. The versatility of the colors (they can be swapped and mixed) is an attempt to suggest an infinity in choices.

THE INVITE

The concept behind the invite also reflects the idea of choice. The 4 invites, each bearing a different phrase (pertaining to choices) and container logo, promotes user interaction. Every word in their individual phrases can be torn out and rearranged to form a new one, should the user choose to. The bottom portion remaining is the actual invite, and bears instructions on what to do. Each invite would also bare the project’s main motto: “Life is all about the road you choose to take”


TRAVELER’S PACK

Since the maze represents journeys taken in life, I decided that the deliverables should naturally adhere to that concept. The traveler’s pack is a companion of sorts, helping the participants in their journey. Once again, white is the thematic color, while all the items are bare in terms of design, as it allows participants to customize their own packs and items – once again alluding to the idea of choice.

In the bag are the following items:

    • A blank Journal
    • A cylinder of color pencils
    • A set of stickers

The journal allows participants to plot their paths and make note of their choice – in a sense the finished journal would be a “fingerprint” of the person. The color pencils provided compliments the journal and the customization aspect, yet it also becomes a metaphor of choice as well;  apart from having to choose a color, participants can also choose to mix colors and form new ones (hence complimenting the logo’s concept as well). Finally the stickers contain different variations of the logo and lets participants choose how they want to use them.

THE FINGERPRINT MAZE

The maze is meant to be large in size, to hide that it is shaped like a fingerprint. The participants would only find out at the end of their journey – to suggest that their choices in the maze has created their own unique mark. White is constant through the project, even in its deliverables. The choice to make white the thematic color of the work is because white represents a clean slate, free to choose and alter. As the participants wander through the maze, the white would also eventually be dirtied, leaving them to ponder on how their choices have left a mark in the space, like a fingerprint.

WHY A FINGERPRINT?

We leave fingerprints on everything we touch, people, places, objects. They are a representation of where we’ve been, and what we’ve done. They are OUR marks on this world, whether good or bad. It that sense they symbolize our actions and choices. The fingerprint is also a metaphor for the uniqueness of Man – in the spiritual and physical sense (thoughts, personality, genetic makeup and actions), it defines what sets men apart from each other.

Another point is that the fingerprint in today’s society is a database that records every decision we’ve made – a mark of sorts. Fingerprint data Is the very foundation the Criminal Justice System. The fingerprint today is a public testament of our triumphs and failures.

WHY A MAZE WITH NUMEROUS OUTCOMES?

A maze is a metaphor of choice and the representation of the paths that we may take in our lives. It offers branching choices, each leading to a different end. However, the use of the maze in this project visualizes these choices and their immediate impact, letting participants see the consequences they reaped with their choices. It also offers them the choice to either then see it through or trace back their steps and take a different road – The opportunity to turn back time and erase their regret. It serves to make them ponder on the choices they may face in their own lives, past, present and future, and the outcomes they may have (had).

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