Learn how to build a data visualization in Illustrator, using scripting for speed, accuracy, and repeatability.
- Welcome to Designing a Data Visualization with Bill Shander. I'm here to walk through a project with you from beginning to end. We're going to take every step along the way towards creating this large, complex, and interesting data illustration. We're going to start off with the big idea. Then we'll cover how to find, and understand, and work with the data. Next we're going to develop the story, sketch the visual approach, and recognize and anticipate trouble spots to solve in the design process. Finally, we'll walk through the design production process for creating this graphic in Illustrator.
I'll also be showing you how to use Adobe Illustrator scripting to automate the process. This is programming, but I will be walking you through it and I don't think it'll be too intimidating. In case you can't tell yet, I love doing this work. I love finding interesting data to work with and getting it into a workable form, which takes time and effort, but it's well worth it. I love, then, looking at the challenges that I want to solve with my design and designing those solutions, and really bringing it all to life. So I look forward to sharing this experience with you. Let's get to it.
The UN Human Development Index used in this course is a perfect example: a composite number used to rank countries on how well they're doing across a range of measures (such as health, wealth, and education). Instructor Bill Shander shows how to make this index data tangible and approachable by imagining the story and visual approach first. He then builds the design in Adobe Illustrator, capitalizing on some automation and scripting abilities the program offers. Start watching for unique insights into the entire data visualization process.
- Working with the data
- Sketching and wireframing your design
- Roughing out the visual design components
- Manually creating the design in Illustrator
- Using Illustrator scripting to improve accuracy, speed, and repeatability
- Designing callout boxes, legends, labels, and more