Visual Research

I’m writing this at a key point in my research for my educating the over 55’s brief. I’ve been so absorbed in it, I haven’t been able to post much about it. There is also another factor, that because I was so involved – I went off track. When researching fully, I start to discover the original references behind the facts – and then look further into those. This uncovers some great facts, but at the same time can be overwhelming.

I have posted my visual research into this age group to the Pinterest Boards below.

Personal Reflection

I could identify personally with my first point of reference, Personal Reflection. I have been doing this all the while through my degree, whilst also taking stock of where I am in my career-shift into teaching. This has involved a great deal of soul-searching and decision making. I think this route has a lot of potential use.

Higher Education

Unsurprisingly, these are aimed at a younger audience – the words and the images describe a vibrant, bright future ahead, with bright colours and bold shapes.

Creative Imagery

These examples use creative imagery to communicate the message. These are of particular interest as they are mostly advertising products for an older audience. Good to see that bold colours and shapes aren’t just the preserve of the young.

Here are some interesting resources I found regarding the older generation:

  • Uncovering the lives of the over 50s
    This article from RDSi Research gives a great insight into the activities, and responsibilities of this age group.
  • The Future of an Aging Population
    This report discusses how older people make up a growing proportion of the population, and make an increasing contribution to society.
  • Acorn
    An incredibly useful tool to help profile people and their respective lifestyles.

Having compiled a good deal of data on this age group it was time to start my visual research. In the past, I would have been inclined to start the visual research first, but this time I went out with a thirst for data and am now satisfied I fully understand this age group.

I also spoke to several people in this age bracket, and here are their thoughts on retraining, or learning new skills over the age of 50.

“After having run a restaurant for 10 yrs, it was time to do something I was passionate about. I successfully retrained as a fitness instructor. I am now a featured trainer for the over 50’s at a high profile health club in the UK. Being over 50 myself this was certainly an achievement.

Norman, 60

“I have a desire to learn, and try new things, but am constantly put off by my peers, who imply that it’s ‘not worth it’ and my age. At 65 I don’t feel old!!”

Jilly, 65


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