In this exercise you will read existing signs, symbols and images, and then drawing on their visual language create your own symbols.

Choose one of the following concepts:

  • Danger
  • Movement
  • Love
  • Here

How does existing visual language represent these concepts, for example, both ‘danger’ and ‘love’ use red, while ‘movement’ and ‘here’ use arrows. Research the different similes and metaphors that are in common use.

Document them through drawings, collecting examples and mind maps. Now create an alternative symbol to represent at least one of the concepts. Pencil and paper is the fastest and most practical way of working out your initial designs. You may then want to develop your idea further using computer software.


I’ve chosen the word Here. Danger and Love are both too obvious for me and heavily used already. “Here” can mean many things. The feeling when you come home after a long day (finally here) or arriving somewhere after long travels.

The feeling when you come home after a long day (finally here) or arriving somewhere after long travels. Or could be orientational, telling you where you actually are (you’re here). Someone could show you a place (it’s right here). Maybe it’s more like a statement (I’m here) or an act of rebellion (i will not move, I’ll stay here) .



I started with a simple mindmap. I tried to come up with as many associations to the word “Here” as i could. What are alternatives? What are Metaphors? Does it have a color?




This is what I’ve found on the web. All images connected to the word Here.


Drawings/ Thumbnails

I liked the idea of the digital hand (cursor). Interestingly, if it points upwards it’s directing you somewhere, usually to perform an action like clicking. But if pointed downwards, it doesn’t seem so actionable. It’s more like making a statement that something is “right here”. I like this. But it misses something. It has to be clearer that it means “here”.

A series of quick Thumbnails of whatever crossed my head at the point to dig deeper.



Design Process

I’ve developed the designs around the Hand and added an alternative using a simple pin.



Final Design




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