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Mango Media - Forage

Forage

2021

Forage is a
digital cookbook

The apps primary objective is to inspire users to prevent wasting food, by suggesting meals that utilize ingredients they would otherwise throw away.

Visual Design Conceptual Design

Date

20/04/2016

Client

NUA

Location

Norwich, United Kingdom

Service

Interface design, branding + illustration

Tools

Sketch, Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop, Javascript, AngularJs, HTML, CSS, NodeJs

UI Design

Forage was my first design brief after returning to England from Sweden in 2016. This project is evidently influenced by the Scandinavian design movement that flourished during the 1950’s in the five Nordic countries. I was particularly inspired by a collection of old Scandinavian cookbooks I acquired while living there.

Swedish design is considered minimalist, with an emphasis on functionality + simple clean lines. The colour palette is taken from nature - wilderness, foaming rivers, rolling countryside + never-ending beaches.

Find your inner chef

The app is all about searching for the next recipe - since foraging is synonymous with searching for ingredients it felt natural to name the app forage.

‘Foraging’ - the acquisition of food by hunting, fishing or gathering. This app is not just about finding new food, but finding your inner chef. Enhancing your cooking abilities by using a fun food social media application.

Iconography

Mushrooms are one of the ingredients most commonly associated with foraging. The mystery + enigma of fungi is fascinating, they are not plants or animals but in a kingdom entirely of their own. Throughout the app, each users icon will differ depending on the popularity of the recipes they have uploaded. New users will start with a chestnut mushroom icon progressing through to a black truffle once they reach a higher rating from other users.

Colour Palette

This colour palette is influenced by the muted tones found in Nordic nature, combining understated + minimal neutral shades with Moss + Woodrose to reflect the essence of the wilderness.

See Project

Conceptual User
Experience

To put it simply, UX is imperative to good website design because it tries to fulfil the user’s needs. Its purpose is to create a meaningful user experience that allows users to define customer journeys on their website that are most conducive to their businesses success.

User Goals

  • Browse through a large library of meals
  • Store recipe collections from other users
  • Upload their own recipes
  • Clearly view instructions + ingredients

Functional Requirements

  • Submitting + editing content
  • Should display data intuitively
  • Intuitive interface + navigation
  • Encouraging users not to waste food

Non-functional Requirements

  • Perform tasks as fast as possible
  • This service should be free
  • A secure database
  • Responsive for all devices

A persona is a fictitious character created to represent a user type that might use a site.

Rosa Parks

Career: Scientist
Age: 29
Gender: Female
Nationality: American
Employer: UWE

Core Needs

To be able to search and find recipes based on the ingredients she has at home. To upload + get feedback on her own dishes that she has submitted. Curate recipe collections uploaded by other users in addition to submitting her own recipes.

Reasons for use

Rosa is a huge fan of cooking shows such as The Great British Bake Off. She cooks a lot of her own food at home + is already at a good level of cooking but has a limited portfolio of dishes. She wants to be able to cook new meals + submit some of her own recipes.

Current Knowledge

The app should provide a wealth of ingredients + recipes so they are easy to access. Its community of chefs + food lovers who all share their knowledge + experience of cooking will help Rosa become a better cook. It should also encourage her to prevent wasting food by suggesting recipes using ingredients she already has.

User scenarios help user experience designers understand how users may interact with the product.

After a stressful day at school teaching children, Rosa cannot be arsed to go to the shop tonight to do ‘the big shop’ although the food in her fridge is minimal. She could order another takeaway - however, she is trying to watch her weight and be healthy this year. In her fridge, she has some leftover goat + some sweet potato amongst a few other random ingredients which she is unsure how to combine. If she was not to use this food today, it would be unsafe to keep in the fridge for any longer. She remembered seeing an advert for a social cooking app called Forage which provides suggestions for meals you can make using the ingredients you already have in stock. She downloaded the app then submits the ingredients she has. Forage responds with 420 meals which include these ingredients. One dish titled ‘curry goat + sweet potato gnocchi’ catches her eye and has been added to 200 other users cookbooks. She has the seasoning she needs + decides to create the dish. The meal was delicious + she did not end up wasting any food she was about to dispose of. Since using Forage Rosa has recommended it to her friends.

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