Reflective Blog Post:  Collaboration

  • How did you assess yourself on the “collaboration” strand of the student as a learner rubric?

I would give myself a satisfactory for collaboration. This is because our team was able to function well with our agreement of working on the project by ourselves and only discuss in team time. This method was effective as we did not have a good method of communication outside of school as one of my teammates did not check WeChat and others did not check their emails.

  • Which were the most difficult? What do you still need to work on?

In our group, we have very individualistic ideas, so we tend to work on our own separate parts and communicate only when we were finished. This led to a lot of issues within our team as we started to miscommunicate along the way. For example, I thought the final project was based around promoting the existing school psychologist and was researching for that. I realized that for me, communication while collaborating is difficult as I cannot communicate my ideas clearly and needs to paraphrase for my team members to understand correctly. I overcame this during the project by speaking to my team members clearly and paraphrasing if they had questions. In particular, I wrote emails concerning the length of my script compared to the entire presentation. My team members thought I was going to have a long script, but a part of it overlapped with someone else’s. After sending emails to my teammate, we confirmed which part I was supposed to say efficiently.

  • Can you rank the norms of collaboration based on their degree of importance? Which norms were the easiest for you to implement?

In my opinion, putting ideas to the table and paying attention to self and others are the most important norms. I know this because we always need new ideas during the IDU. When I found out that school psychologists are difficult to hire, we had to think of this as a potential counterclaim and add to our presentation. Paying attention is also very important as we solved many problems that occurred through listening carefully and paraphrasing. The easiest for me to implement for me is providing data as while I may not be opinionated, I am good at researching topics that we needed to know, such as analyzing the ISB data and comparing it to data from outside sources.

  • When is collaboration valuable?

Collaboration is valuable when working with people I am not familiar with. With this project, I was lucky to be in a team with people I am at least familiar with, so many conflicts did not turn down our team morale. We were able to respect what each person could do and would not be frustrated if someone did not do what they were supposed to do. In the future, I would still like to work on explaining my idea well and concisely and try to communicate more with the entire group.

Design Persona

What is graphic design?

Graphic design is solving a design problem with visual media such as animation, movies, illustrations, etc.


What do you hope to learn?

I hope to learn more about character designing and art techniques such as lines and shadows. I would like to learn how to animate in 2D if there is time. I hope to improve my backgrounds for illustrations.

What is the best thing you’ve made?

I really only draw in my sketchbooks. I guess a thing I’m proud of would be a finished sketchbook. I am a very disorganized person so I often loose sketches that I draw. I will definitely like to finish an illustration in this course so I can move on from simple sketches.

What do you want to make this semester?

My first goal is a finished character design. I would also like to work on a storyboard for an animation or hopefully finish an entire animatic.

What current strengths do you have?

I can sketch quickly and well. I am good at focusing on a single design problem.

Untitled 4

As this was my first time using Adobe Illustrator, I was confused at first about how to use the different tools initially. I think the most I had struggled in was when I did not close off the shapes in a layer. One of the worst problems I encountered was when there were blank spaces around the intersections of certain shapes. There were often many white spaces between colored shapes. As I became more familiar with the application, I was able to improve how closely my lines lined up.

This design reflects who I am as a designer (and a person in general) through the different styles used throughout. I am usually very disorganized. I have a lot of ideas and I cannot fit them into 1 thing and I will often leave multiple drafts.

Pencil case: Create and improve cont.

Product refections

This design was created to address the issue of the waste produced by many fashion industries. Many people would stop wearing the same thing after a year or two and even if they do not throw away their old clothing, it will still become waste in the future. Therefore, I aimed to create a pencil case or a bag that looked professionally made so people would be interested in recycling their clothing.

I would like to have made a survey to interact more with my audience as I did not realize until I started creating my prototypes that many people were not interested in getting pencil cases. I think this is because most students would already have a pencil case that they are using. For the future of my project, I would like to expand the range of products to broaden the possible audience for my product.



Pencil case: Create and improve


Day 1: Measure out the dimensions of the main piece of fabric. Pin the denim to the zipper. 

Day 2: Sew the whole piece.

As I was creating my prototypes, I realized how small of an audience there is for pencil cases. So I made my other prototype into a small makeup bag. It was more challenging to create because of the quilting element I added to it. 

Day 1: Measure the dimensions of all 3 pieces of the body along with enough backing fabric. Sew the backing pieces onto the main section. I realized that I should not have put different backing fabrics for each part of the pattern as the intersections became challenging to sew.


Day 2:  Sew the material to the zipper. 

Day 3: finished basic shape, start working on the corners. I found out that the length of the bag would shrink when I squared the edges of the new case. This is another reason I changed my product slightly to include different types of containers as this prototype was too small to be used as a pencil case, but could be a small makeup bag or wallet.  

Day 4: Finish the prototype 






Pencil case: Develop & Plan


These are some of my brainstormed patterns for the pencil case that I will make. Currently, my idea is to create a simple design such as two different fabrics sewn together. As I do not have much experience sewing an easier design would benefit me as then I can focus on the pattern and design of my final product more. It would also allow me to make the pencil case out of both recycled clothing and plastic sheets and finally, I will most likely have more time to work on a complex design.

For my final product, I will use recycled blue denim and plastic sheets as my main fabrics. One problem I encountered while making the plastic sheets is that it wrinkles easily which does not look as “nice ” or as a finished product as denim. Another problem was that the plastics cannot be in direct contact with the iron as it will melt.

Idea sketches for the shape of the final product. I will most likely use the easier design for my final product.

First prototype The pattern I used made the top too large so the design was not usable. The measurements of the pencil case are similar to a regular pencil case but I would still like to enlarge it. Finally, the fabric I used was a thin white cloth so it does not stand up well.

Plan: cut a piece of denim and a piece of the plastic sheet. Join together so that the final dimensions are 23 by 26. Zigzag stitch around the border of the 2 fabrics. Follow the sewing pattern for a pencil case. For the plastic sheet, I plan to use a layer of bubble wrap and a layer of plastic.

Prototype 2

This prototype is made using hot glue and pressed plastic sheets. It worked well although the glue burned through the plastic when I tried to glue it together.

Prototype 2

I used the sewing machine for my second prototype, it did not look as good as my first. After this design, I decided that this pattern is not good for my finished product.


Pencil case: Define & Inquire

Design problem:Creative pencil case designs for students made of recycled polyester or old clothes. This idea helps recycle old polyester which is usually made from recycled plastic. This is useful as recycling polyester is difficult and is not really sustainable even with rPET which is recycled polyester. I was inspired to do this project because many people I know are quickly growing out of their old clothes who would throw out their clothing or never wear them again.

User/audience: Students, people who need to organize their writing utensils.

Purpose: The pencil case itself is used for holding small objects such as pens and pencils. it can also help recycle old/used clothes. It can also be expanded into a variety of products such as make up bags or travel bags.

Constraints: Pencil cases are fairly easy to make and there are a lot of patterns for it out there. However, to innovate on the idea, I might need to create my own pattern which would take slightly longer as I am aiming to finish an actual product. Another constraint would be fabric for the pencil case as I want to make it out of recycled clothing. A problem I might ace in terms of sustainability is that I will have to consider how long a person generally use the same bag for.

Goals: Design and sew a pencil case that is made out of recycled clothing and plastic

Materials/resources: iPad, apple pencil, Sewing machine, thread and fabrics. Patterns for reference

Product Pitch pdf

Made with Padlet

Inspiration board.


Audience persona

This audience persona isn’t fixed as pencil cases or small bags in general can be used by a variety of people. For the actual product, I would prefer that the audience would be able to provide their own old clothing so my product would be mostly aimed towards young adults as they change what they’re wearing more frequently.

What I learned:

  • It is difficult to use the sewing machine well, I still need practice on it.
  • I am still unclear on how to draw patterns for pencil cases.
  • Old clothes are pretty simple to get
  • I can make different products to suit different audiences as through an interview I did with a few of my peers, I discovered that 2 out of the 3 did not want a pencil case.
  • I can make the final product out of both plastic and recycled clothing which would help recycle a wider range of products.
  • Juan Gomez


Bird’s Nest

 When I was looking for inspiration, I chose to look at bird nests as a influence for my product as there was a really old nest that was on one of the trees in my neighborhood. These are the sources I drew inspiration for the design of my chair from mainly.

These were alternate designs I considered making but I did not choose these concepts as they were too difficult, and I could not come up with specific ideas for them.

I drew and colored some sketches for my concept.

However, my model did not look that good as the base of the chair was slightly flattened as it dried, so I did not use my model for the final poster, but I liked how the pillows and the branch turned out.


A Polluted Future- The Documentary

There are many problems in China but this is one that has a direct impact on all of us. Beijing has been struggling with the problem of air pollution since 2008, when the Olympics were held. This issue greatly affects developmental health in children. The good news is that the government along with the rest of the world is trying hard to eliminate this problem. The documentary explains this issue and its impact on health in an interview that I conducted with a doctor working at the New Century Children’s Hospital.

Throw a Ball

1. We learned how to graph a real world scenario, throwing a ball, using logger pro. We combined ideas from Module 4 and 5 as it shows a quadratic line of best fit.

2. Our group was very efficient in splitting the workload among ourselves. Even though we had 4 people, everyone did their part and we split the project pretty evenly.

3. The biggest challenge for us was that we did not know how to use logger pro well. Only a few of us have actually used logger pro before and none of us knew how to draw the graph. We made many mistakes during the graphing process and it was frustrating.

4. We procrastinated a lot during the project, otherwise, it would have been finished sooner. I think what I would do to improve would be to use our time better as we rushed the video making part.

5. As we already know how to use logger pro, I think we should focus more on the video as it was pretty rushed and our music is generic.

Journal entry 5