Shangri-La–the utopia and dystopia

In his book Lost Horizon, James Hilton depicted a dreamy place names Shangri-La—an earthly paradise, this Shangri-La locates at the deep valley of Himalayan area. Shangri-La is most worshipped for its breathtakingly beautiful scenery: azure sky as clear as a jade, green meadow with vibrancy, flowing creaks, etc.… Shangri-La is truly a place where beauty presents itself and disharmony goes away. Dystopia, on the other hand, tells the story of a world where chaos is full in house. In this imagined place, everything is unpleasant with the degraded environment.

(this is a slideshow please see all three pics 🙂 )



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Great contrast right? This sharp contrast happens to be my impression for Promenade of Industry after paying several visits. In light of this, I will polish my website in the direction of a “polarity” which will expose the great contrast between the weirdly beautiful view and the actually heavily polluted situation in the promenade of industry. In order to achieve this affectual effect, I will employ the technique that all the pictures on my website can flip so that when people hover on one beautiful image and click on it, the image would automatically flip and show another dystopia look of this image.

Also I’m trying to create a flow on my website that everything looks aesthetically attractive at first, but with the detailed explanation of my words, they will figure out the disharmonious factors that lay in the overall beautiful images. I want to make my index page into a short video, with a hyperlink at that could route to homepage. In that short video I will give a brief introduction of Shangri-La and of promenade of industry, but I will only give positive images of it. Then if the audience click on the hyperlink, they can go to the homepage where there will be a little game, asking you to find five trashes on a beautiful picture taken in promenade of industry (like the hidden object games). You can click on the trash once you find one (I’ll use the mask function to make hyperlink on each trash) and it will lead you to an explanation page where the true environmental situation in the promenade of industry is explained.

I want to design my website into this hidden object game because I want to make sure that the audiences know that the trashes don’t grasp their attention first. They care about the overall harmonious beauty first. If they were not asked to find out the trashes via the mini game, they would probably not notice the trashes at all. I want to express the idea that those smalls objects that don’t get into our attention first could actually be essential in an ecology. Also I want to point out that the promenade of industry, just like Shangri-La, may look fantastic at first, but actually there are lots of things that aren’t pretty in it, and they need close investigation. (This is the link to a rough footage that I took, which resonates with my aim. )

This is just a rough though that I have right now. I will add on this thought if anything constructive comes into my mind.

~ by gracehuang24 on March 28, 2018.

3 Responses to “Shangri-La–the utopia and dystopia”

  1. I really like the conceptual elements at play in your revamped design proposal. This blog post offers proposals in a way that anyone could understand and explores the project outside of the narrative of the class. I liked your use of media.

  2. I find the content fascinating because it really gives me an idea of how Grace wants to change her web design to create a better flow.

  3. I really like your idea of focusing on the polarity of your ecology and the concept of utopia vs. dystopia. The design aspect for your website that you discuss is also very interesting given the interactivity and audience engagement with the images. The idea of a hidden object game that illustrates the precarity of your site is also really promising as it adds another dimension to your website, making it dynamic and fun and informative at the same time.

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