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maggie ma design spatial experiences

spatial experiences:

interactive modular environments.


spatial experiences maggie ma

Select a "verb" for user interaction, and three adjectives for the mood, and design a spatial experience using modular systems. Consider scale, color, and lighting to shape user experiences and perceptions in space.


Physical prototyping, user experience/interaction design, environments design


My adjectives are lively, creative, colorful, and productive.

My action verb is sit/work.

My physical context is an office/workspace environment. My intention, however, was not to create a sterile, rigid, industrial, boring workspace that characterizes most offices. I wanted to create a more millennial and creative area in which there are areas for collaboration (in the walkways and open spaces) as well as places to do individual work (in the cubicles). 

The overall branching configuration of the modules in rows is inspired by common office space configurations (organized and structured), however, the semi-circle shape and bright pops of color are fun and energetic (a balance between structured and dynamic). The photos were taken next to a window in sunlight to mimic tall, glass windows that are popular in modern office spaces.



After deciding on using the semi-circle module (click above link to see preliminary steps up to this point in process), I created three rows of pods each with three modules/cubicles and played around with the configurations.


Some sketches of my ideas to create a work/study space.

adding people for scale

I created multiple cutouts of paper people to play around with the scale of my structure. This also brought the environment to life and I was able to capture some point of view photos.

physical context

My physical context is a millennial, collaborative, and creative workplace, with describing adjectives such as creative, productive, lively, colorful.

user experience interviews

I conducted three interviews with people who didn't know the project, asking them how they would describe the environment (showed POV photos and the structure itself). The general feedback were adjectives such as colorful, lively, and modern. I also received feedback saying the space seemed too noisy and claustrophobic to complete work. 


Because a lot of the positive feedback supported the colorful patterns of the cereal box designs, I wanted to maintain that color palette in my final structure. To reduce the visual noise of the structure, however, I decided to paint solid colors over all the graphics. I also realized that the multiple shades of brown from different types of chipboard created unnecessary visual distractions, so I painted over it with a muted gray.