Thesis Project



Say Cheese

Featuring: The Cheese Class


May 8, 2020
Grace Barrett

The Problem

The problem that inspired the beginning of my research was how technological advancements and inclinations to work digitally have limited our emotional experiences with physical photographs. People tend to work strictly digitally and will miss out on the emotional experience of interacting with printed photos.

How can parents who don’t print their photos and have elementary-aged children create a stronger emotional connection with their memories through printed photographs? Not including family portraits.

Success Statement

Parents of elementary-aged children who currently don’t print their photos and work strictly digitally will have access to an easy to use application that will remind them to reflect on their memories more often. The application will encourage users to share these memories in a physical form, a postcard, with loved ones to share the memory in a much more powerful way than sharing the photograph digitally .

Target Audience

I am targeting parents of elementary-aged children who currently work strictly digitally and do not print their photos. My goal was to find out what barriers were stopping them from printing photos and finding a solution that will bring them the stronger emotional experience of interacting with physical photos.


My research methods consisted of two separate surveys, one sent to parents of elementary-aged kids who work strictly digitally and one to those who print photos. I also interviewed parents of elementary-aged kids who work strictly digitally and researched the emotional benefits of interacting with printed photos.

I found that 83% of survey respondents who work strictly digitally would be more inclined to print photos more regularly if there was a simple system set up. They would not set aside time to sift through and print all of their photos regularly on their own, they want to be reminded to print photos, and have a short, simple process to print photos.

Only 33% of those who work strictly digitally thought printed photos would waste space in their home, they needed the physical photos to be limited, have a frame or spot to be hung, and it should be an important memory.

63% of survey respondents who print photos stated that they select specific events to print photos from. They would not want all of their memories printed, only a curated collection from some of their favorite moments.

Interviewees stated that they value the organization of working digitally and the readiness to share photos. They would value a system that would include data from each memory, they also understood that interacting with physical photos will bring a stronger emotional experience with the memory.

My primary research supports the insights that physical photos improve vivid memory of each moment in comparison to digital photos, and physical photos have been proven to stimulate an emotional reaction that is significantly stronger than digital media.

Design Process + Testing

I wanted the branding of the application to bring a positive feeling of reflecting and printing photographs, the logo resembles a camera lens, and also is part of a smiley face. The name “Recapture” stemmed from the idea of experiencing a moment again, and how interacting with the memories in a physical form can make the memory more vivid. When designing the application and final product, I wanted the experience to be as efficient and simple as possible. Once users create a profile and connect their social media accounts and calendars, they will have to spend a few minutes at the end of each month curating their memories. If they would like to reflect they can enter the application at any time, select a memory to share, write a message, choose from the options for the postcard, and send the message and photo on its way.

Design Solution

My design solution was Recapture, a phone application that encourages those who work strictly digitally with photos to reflect on their memories more often and share these memories in a physical form, more specifically, a postcard with a quality print on one side and a message on the other.

Grace Barrett

Graduation Year: 2020
Return to Top