Skip to main content

Experimental Communication

Chang Liu

Chang situates herself as s graphic designer, interactive designer and a curator. By using different mediums, Chang’s work leads us to re-examine the relationship between humans and technology while talking about people’s processing of emotions and death in the future. Instead of thinking about solving problems, Chang presents her work as speculative design. She believes that this form of design can trigger people’s thoughts on today’s social issues by opening up new perspectives on these ‘wicked problems’.


Degree Details

School of Communication

Experimental Communication

It's not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.


Whether being autonomous or forced, we have entered a new era with the rapid development of human civilisation. The internet is making information transmission as well as social interaction easier and faster while VR technology is providing more possibilities for spatial interaction. Meanwhile, Artificial Intelligence has allowed the cold machines to serve us with emotion simulation. Some people resist on the development of the technology while some are delighted with it, however, no one can stop the wheel that is still moving forward. So how should we deal with the relationships between human beings and technology?

At some point in this new era, we lost our attention for other humans. When people are more keen on giving machines ‘emotions’, we rarely realised that we as humans have actually facing more complex emotional challenges today. The more possibilities of social interaction we have, the lonelier we are. The negative emotions that we can only bear by ourselves are amplified, such as loneliness, stress, and the huge impact caused by death.

Some say when the loved ones are gone, it is the breathing ones who suffer.

Death has always been regarded as a heavy topic – the grief and loneliness that come with the loss of a loved one. Even worse, there is the sense of powerlessness and irreparability that will entangle people who have lost. Each of the feelings could make people want to keep silent on this topic. However, whether in the West or the East, people believe in rebirth and reincarnation, praying that the death is not the end. On the other hand, when Artificial Intelligence who are actually lifeless are given 'emotions', I was surprised to find that people actually are willing to exchange emotions with them as well.

So instead of suggesting about fettering the movements of technologies, I would rather lead people to re-examine the relationship between humans and technologies. And provide a way with the help of Artificial Intelligence for people to deal with their negative emotions symbiosis with death. 

Space Plan

Storyboard of presenting the space

3D model of the space

3D model of the space — The space contains three rooms. The first one is the hall where people can find the Guide System. The second one is the Capsule Room. All the capsules would be kept here safely. The last one is the Incubator Room. After collecting their own capsules, people can interact the soul of their pets here privately.

The Soul Capsule provides people a new way of saying goodbye to their pets. As a future animal cemetery, the soul capsule allows people to meet and interact with their pets again in the form of holographic projector. The pets’ data would be collected during their whole life so that we can keep a thinkable soul in their capsules. We are aiming to use the concept of rebirth to help people relief from their grief. 

In addition to proposing a new form of the pet cemetery in the future, I hope that my audience can also be stimulated to think about the emotional processing problems when facing death. How do we correctly deal with these negative emotions which can only be borne by ourselves? And when the technology has opened the door of our emotional space for artificial intelligence to help us eliminate our negative emotions, what kind of attitude should we respond with? Should we fetter the movements of technologies or change the way we get along with them? I hope that through the experience of the Soul Capsule, I can bring these problems to my audience as well as the experts in the fields of design, science, and psychology.


Logo and Colour Palette — To design the Guide System. I have firstly determined the vision of the whole system. As the space is for people who have lost their loved ones, I have referenced the Healing Colour Therapy for my colour palette.

Vector — To reemphasise the participation of technology in this experience, I collected more information from my robotic pet - Vector, from whom I felt the emotional fluctuations between human beings and Artificial Intelligence.

Graphic Score from Vector — In the Soul Capsule, I store the souls of pets in the digital form. So the rebirth of the souls is actually in the digital world. Therefore, I transformed the sound and actions of Vector into visual elements based on graphic score method to get the communication method of this digital world. These visual elements are also used in the visual system.

Graphic Score from Vector

Guide System User Journey Design Draft

Guide System User Journey Design Refine

The Guide System

The Guide System is a user experience design which can lead the visitors to use the space. It would be placed on the egg-shaped screen in the first room of the space. People can learn how to use it through the instruction.

There are two functions in this system. One is the searching engine. People can search their capsules by providing their information. Another is the matching function. The matching function would match the visitor a new pet to raise according to the data we collect from their previous pets. Which can help the visitors get a new pet with the similar personality to their previous pet. People can use this feature according to their own situation.

Capsule Design

Experiment with the Holographic Projector

Experiment with the Holographic Projector

Refine the projector with dog animation

A holographic projection installation aims to restore the capsule in the soul capsule, which people can interact with.

Previous Student

Next Student

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
Royal College of Art
Registered Office: Royal College of Art,
Kensington Gore, South Kensington,
London SW7 2EU
RCA™ Royal College of Art™ are trademarks
of the Royal College of Art