Data Culture Visualization Studio Launch!

Gabi Steele (left), Marisa Asari (center), Mikaela Ergas Lenett (right), image courtesy of Data Culture

Q: What is Data Culture Studio? What inspired Data Culture to create a Studio?

DC Studio is Data Culture’s visualization and storytelling studio. We specialize in building interactive narratives and telling compelling stories with data.

We’ve always been passionate about data viz, and we found ourselves taking on more and more projects where there was an opportunity to craft a narrative from start to finish. The more organizations we worked with, the more we realized telling visual, data-driven stories is a critical need across industries. We also looked at our team and realized we had a truly unique combination of skills — from design, to data science, to engineering, to storytelling — with all of these complementary talents, it felt like we had to bring the Studio to life! Above all, we’re excited to bring the Data Culture lens to organizations and industries who have great stories to share.

Q: What is data visualization?

People tend to think about data visualization as the chart you add once you’ve prepped your data. We love charts and graphs as much as anyone (probably more!), but there’s so much more we can do with data. We always try to think of data as building blocks for visual communication. When you realize data is just information, or a representation of something that exists in the world, it frees you to think a little more creatively about how to best tell your story.

Whether it’s a simple bar chart, map, or infographic, a complex data-driven report, or a BI dashboard, all of our work is driven by two key questions: 1. What will the viewer take away that they didn’t know before, and 2. How will they act on this information?

graphic courtesy of Data Culture

Q: How do custom data visualizations differ from traditional dashboards and infographics?

Custom visualizations really provide the opportunity to think outside of the box. A custom visualization guides viewers through a visual hierarchy of information, often in a story woven together with multiple graphics and concepts.

We might use traditional charts and graphs to understand a dataset, but then move into different levels of design and visualization to craft a piece that brings the information to life. Custom visualizations also differ in the tools and skills required to bring them to life. We build full web and mobile experiences, which require front-end engineering tools and libraries, as opposed to the out-of-the box BI & chart building software used to create traditional reports and dashboards.

Q: How do you approach a data visualization project?

We break down our process into three key steps: 1. Understanding the audience, 2. Understanding the data, 3. Translating narrative into visuals.

We also think critically about how data visualization can be leveraged to push back on existing assumptions and re-shape rather than reinforce the status quo. Although all of our projects are highly custom, we’ve streamlined our process to ensure we deliver something exciting and actionable.

Q: How could data visualization support my industry, department or organization?

Whether you’re redesigning your internal dashboards, sharing data you’ve collected back with your customers, or creating digital impact reports for your nonprofit, data visualization can make your work so much more powerful.

We’ve worked with ecommerce brands, technology companies, venture capital firms, nonprofits, and companies of all sizes who want to tell stories and craft experiences, as opposed to just sharing data.

Image courtesy of Franki Chamaki on Unsplash

Q: What does success look like for the Studio?

Doing the work we love for organizations we truly believe in. Data visualization is our passion, but it’s really our client’s work that excites and motivates us every day. The end goal is always to help people understand and engage with the amazing work being done in the world — data visualization is just our toolkit.

Thinking about investing in better data visualization? Get in touch with us at info@dataculture.studio

We build data-driven organizations and create lasting data culture.

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