I created my DA (digital artefact), ‘JLifeStyleee’ last semester for BCM112 as a fashion and travel Instagram and blog. I had come up with this idea due to my year and a half work experience within the fashion industry, as well as my experience of being a student at Orana Fashion Business College. For this aspect, I would post images outfits that I had worn for people to use as outfit ideas. I would then write a linking blog post which included where you could buy the clothing items, how much they cost and their sizing range. In addition to this I have travelled / camped around Australia on 2 separate occasions for 4-5 months where I had discovered what I like to call ‘hidden paradises’ in extremely rural areas. I wanted to share with people as typically, their travel experiences would consist of places overseas, so to do this, I would post an image of the destination the again write a linking blog post about my experiences there.
Sadly, my DA for BCM112 was not receiving the traction I had hoped for, the Instagram’s following was interacting with my filler posts more so than the travel and fashion posts which was also resulting in less trafficking through my linked blog. I also realized that the blog posts, in particular the travel ones were taking a lot longer to curate than I had anticipated. It was this that allowed me to experience the concept of FEFO (Fail Early, Fail Often) and activated the thinking process to allow me to refine, improve and remake my DA while still following the FIST principles, ensuring that my project would be Fast, Inexpensive, Simple and Tiny.
Additionally, I began to consider the design thinking process, learning how to use empathy to define and ideate my DA.
In order for my thinking process to effectively impact the refining, improving and remaking process of my DA, I had to observe all of its aspects. Initially, I observed what posts were receiving the most interaction across both media platforms. In doing this I found that although my travel posts were reaching a larger audience on Instagram, the fashion posts would receive more overall interaction on both Instagram and WordPress. Therefore, I knew I wanted to keep the fashion aspect of my original DA.
Additionally, although the process was inexpensive, and tiny, it lacked the fast and simple aspects of the FIST principles as I found the blog posts would take more time than anticipated; in particular the travel posts. This is when I began to consider Dan Ward’s ‘Simplicity Cycle’ and wanted to refine what was a complex system to evolve a simple system.
This process also lead me to researching what was lacking within the 800+ million Instagram users, something that would allow my online presence to stand out.
After observing and thinking about how to effectively refine, improve and remake my DA and form a clear trajectory with a new end target. Initially, I considered all possible outcomes of my DA, while using Stuart Candy’s model of different kinds of futures to assist me in having a clear definition of my preferable outcome.
Through my research, I discovered that among all fashion bloggers, there were none that were to purely assist females with outfitting which is how I began to refine my DA whilst considering the overall aesthetics as this would be an interpretation of how I wanted my DA to be framed; and as we all know perception is framing.
Clearly defining my DA will also allowed me to get my project up and running to test the FEFO theory and watch the non-linear process begin.
Ideating and future goals:
This process of thinking, observing and defining lead me to the refined and remade JLifeStyleee.
I want my DA to act as a platform with Instagram as my medium to address every girl’s biggest statement before a night out “I have no idea what to wear”. With this, females of any age will be able to get in contact with me when they are in need of assistance in styling a clothing item or finding an outfit for an upcoming event. Whoever in contact with me will be asked to answer a few questions, depending on what they want assistance with; based on these answers, I will then find suitable outfits and clothing items to suggest and once they are happy with the options and styling suggestions I provide, I’ll post images of the clothing items on my Instagram as well as write a blog post including all the clothing items and where to find them. This will encourage people to interact with all aspects of my DA and hopefully encourage others to use it, essentially growing my online presence.
Since launching the remade JLifeStyleee, my online interaction has already increased, indicating that my refining and defining had an effective impact.
As I aspire to continue a career within the fashion industry, involving social media and marketing, I hope to one day use this online presence as a portfolio for my resume which will allow employees to explore a physical work of mine, giving them evidence that I would be an appropriate candidate for any job I aspire to apply for.
By Jasmine Montana