Book: Design for Emotion
by Tara Milroy / August 14, 2013
Whether consciously or not, all contemporary designers are on some level designing to appeal to our emotions. The authors of Design for Emotion, Trevor van Gorp and Edie Adams, assert that all design solicits an emotional response from its user, and that in order to be a successful designer one must consider the user's emotions as an integral part of their design process. Design for Emotion breaks down the relationship between design and emotion, and illustrates how to design with this relationship in mind.


The book offers an overview on the psychology of emotion, and the ways by which products can become meaningful to its users. How to communicate emotion though design is then described through a series of design models, culminating in a chapter of case studies and interviews with designers, authors, and researchers specialising in design for emotion. Throughout the book, various everyday examples of designs are presented within the framework of the way they appeal (or don't appeal) to our emotions.

Authors Trevor van Gorp and Edie Adams, the give the book a personal tone that engages the reader (which in itself is appealing to our emotions). With over 40 patents and more than 16 years at Microsoft, Adams is a well-known name in the field of designing for emotion, and has been involved in the field for over 20 years. She is a Certified Professional Ergonomist, and also holds a Master of Environment Design in Industrial Design and a B.Sc. in Psychology, both from the University of Calgary.

Van Gorp has been studying the interrelationship between design and emotion for nearly a decade, and is the founder of Affective Design, a user experience-based design consultancy specialising in emotional design. Van Gorp too holds a Master of Environment Design in Industrial Design from the University of Calgary, as well as a B.F.A. in Graphic Design. Available at Amazon.

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