Infographics are a fantastic visualization tool, particularly for communicating scientific information to the public. For decades, they have made otherwise difficult to digest data much more palatable and have emerged as the data visualization tool of choice for all manner of media. Yet, up until now, you typically only ever see static infographics; instruments designed to accommodate the static nature of the print medium. Given that society has developed a sustained appetite for digital publications on mobile platforms, there really isn’t any reason that data visualizations need to be static and instruments like dynamic data dashboards featuring sliders and buttons are a product of that realization.
So why do we still see all those static infographics? Eleanor Lutz of the blog Tabletop Whale is tackling that question head-on with her collection of science infographics that make brilliant use of GIF’s to communicate scientific concepts. Take a look at any of her wonderful dynamic illustrations and you’ll instantly understand why her work is so effective at communicating concepts like insect and bird flight patterns or respiratory gas exchange.
Of course, GIF’s probably aren’t appropriate for every digital illustration (for instance, Eleanor’s 42 Butterflies of North America may have been better as a static illustration), but Lutz is definitely on to something and I can’t wait to see more of her work!
If you’d like to learn more about the process behind these fantastic infographics, be sure to check-out Eleanor’s tutorial posted on her blog.