The Look Cook Book will be the first printed book to convey over 70 recipes in a format that is understandable in and language. The project brief was to standardize the written cooking format into an international visual language, with healthy and delicious recipes that could be made for $1.50 a portion with easy to access ingredients.
The goal was to bring healthy (yet delicious) food into the hands of low income families, refugees and notoriously pasta-ridden students via one single format.The Look Cook Book stands as a humanitarian application of design to enrich life within recession and post recession economies.
The Project is currently funding on Kickstarter, and the video is available on YouTube.
Kieran McNally - Designer
James Mason - App Developer
Look at the modern cookbook market, and you'll see the exact same basic layout that has existed for at least 50 years.There have been several attempts to update the cookbook format to a more visual and intuitive style, yet, despite the illustrative and photographic additions there have been no real communication innovations outside of the world of the Tasty Network and Buzz Feed Food. The Look Cook Book aims to break the status quo by bringing an alternative UX to market using industrial design thinking to create a visual format without language barriers.
The iconographic visuals work by boiling down sentences to their crucial essence so that they read more like how humans think, rather than how they write.For example, if one were to see a dog walking down the road, one's brain would go "dog", not "There is a dog over there". When applied to a recipe, this logic subtracts superfluous syntax. This simplified speech is then converted into a visual format that has been standardized to increase visual simplicity, making it easier to understand at a glance.
Within the ingredient listing, there are written prompts to help new users link the visual to ingredients. These will however become bypassed as the user learns the icons and what they represent. Although not necessary for all ingredients (such as an apple), it was found to be useful when introducing various herbs and spices.
The format has been designed around three mediums; a full color A4 hardback, an interactive digital book with accessibility features (such as integrated preset timers and magnifiers), and a free PDF to broaden the level of accessibility.
The system has been created by Kieran McNally, a student of Industrial Design at Brunel University London as part of his year in industry. After working at a consultancy for 6 months, he decided to focus his attention towards humanitarian applications of design within recession and post recession economies.
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