With an estimated 2.2 million to 3.8 million species, fungi are the second largest kingdom of organisms after animalia. They are immensely diverse, with around 144,000 species named and classified so far, at a current rate of around 2,000 per year. This represents only about 3 to 8 percent of the estimated global fungal species. Not only are fungi critical for decomposing dead matter and recycling nutrients, they also provide many direct benefits to humans – from edible mushrooms and bread and drinks made using yeasts to antibiotics. It is therefore no surprise that so many people show interest in mushrooms. Our project about mushroom characteristics is meant to help amateur as well as experienced mushroom pickers to identify their discoveries. By showing five very different variations out of nine significant categories of the mushroom structure, we wanted to incorporate a large diversity of shapes. When used as a guide in application software, users can choose one symbol of each category that applies to their mystery mushroom. As a result, they will receive a list of all the fungal species that match their choices, which makes the process of classifying the mushroom a lot quicker and easier. The visual language we chose is a mix between abstract linear shapes that emphasize the core element of each symbol and detailed structures that underline the natural, imperfect aspect of our topic.
Annatina Themis and Nora Fisher
Annatina Themis and Nora Fisher are two visual communication students at the Academy of Art and Design in Basel, Switzerland. Their work mainly consists of graphic design, photography and motion design. For their projects, they try to capture the essence of an issue while discovering unique and effective ways to communicate.