Through Demibooks, I had the privilege of working with Picsterbooks to create several storybook apps for students at the Transoranje School for the Deaf in South Africa. The books are part of a project called iDeaf, founded by Karen Hart. The iDeaf project received funding from the Anglo American Chairman’s Fund to create 6 Interactive Book Apps for the school to be built in both Afrikaans and Afrikaans sign Language as well as translated to English and South African sign Language (SASL).
The books focus on teaching sign language through stories. Each book is richly interactive and allow the students to focus on the visual aspect of learning object names, concepts, spelling, and sign. They include sign language interpretation videos, animations, touch interactive words, and hand spelling on each page.
When thinking of the user interface design for this project, it was important to show certain concepts and words simultaneously. Karen used a sectioned template with the main window used to illustrate and animate the main action of the page. Below the main window was a section for the text. The highlighted words in the text are touch interactive and bring up multiple things at once on the side panel:
-A Sign language interpretation video
-A spot animation or illustration to visually describe the word
-The letters in the word
-The hand spelling of the word
THE BIG CARROT
THE KINGS QUESTIONS
ANIMATION AND ART SAMPLES
Most of the art I made for these books was created as vector art in illustrator, and then animated in Flash. I was a bit limited in textures, but i tried to incorporate texture wherever I could to give the environment a little softer quality