Borda D'Agua - Case Study I


Reimagining a beautifully old publication into a digital experience

Borda D'Água's project was in fact an exercise for a job interview. I redesigned the publication in four days to be used on an IPhone App. Borda D'Água is an annual publication with a large diversity of information and a very wide range of customer segments. It's content varies from astrology to moons, tides, agricultural tips, annual to monthly markets, all holidays (international, national, regional and religious), to sunset and sunrise times.
However, this wasn't the biggest. The biggest challenge of all was to portrait the tradition inherent to Borda D'Água. The big question was how should one portrait a traditional publication with all it's printing details, on a digital version of the publication's experience?

The characteristic old illustrations, it's pocket size format, it's texture and the fact that the pages are not cut apart from one another, only folded - it all spells tradition and uniqueness. It's printed in the same type printer since 1929. Read about the Borda D'Água's history here.

A deconstruction content-first approach

I'm all for content-first and because form follows function my first step was to deconstruct the printed content. I drew wireframes of the printed content by hand on a piece of paper. I needed to unassemble all pieces of content into blocks so I could redesign it for another format entirely.

As I deconstructed all pages and blocks on the print layouts I kept thinking it could be more useful to have the information handed to you depending on your interests. Not everyone who needs the publications for sea-level consultation will necessarily want to go through fairs or famous people's deaths, horoscopes or local markets. Different uses, different people use the same publication. Agricultural intensive, or agriculture as hobbies, tips on how to clean silver, as well as holidays. So I kept thinking, with so much info in hand, the shouldn't the app know your interests to help you navigate? That became the concept behind the project. 

Breaking up content by fine-tuning interests

An informed Information Architecture was the key to the project. I've created a concept where personalization by interest would be the first layer for filtering information on the app. It's still Borda D'Água has we know it, just easier to use and more personalised to what you need to find. This would save time for the users in the future never the less all information is available at all times. 

Identity and visual choices
Maintaining original features

Borda D'Água app has two levels of information - a scroll of monthly-cards with your personalised areas of interest and it's inside screen, with all monthly happenings, offering a day-by-day view, like you get on the printed version.

At any given moment, you can use the search bar to get to something specific, otherwise, you can just use the menu to get to it. 

Visually, I opted for a modern and neutral sans-serif typeface by contrast and not to lose the printed feel I also used a serif typeface similar to the one we get on the publication. The icons were chosen act as marks and symbols of representation of a theme, a constant legend of themes like we see throughout Borda D'Água. The reduction on the colour palette was purposeful, use of Grey's, White's and Red. Red is a Borda D'Água's colour as it's used to distinguish the original versions from the fake ones, on the front page.

See the project wireframes and some screens here