Nodal — The Competition App. Case Study.

Liv Carmen
Feb 19, 2018 · 7 min read


Formally called “P3”, this was our first group project with the UX students. Our group was comprised of 3 UX students (Jennifer, Lochlan, and Julian) and 2 UI students (Shirley and I). Our client project that was thoughtfully assigned to us by the instructors at RED was an app called “Nodal”, from a former RED UI student, Sarvhind. The app he proposed was for students to see competition postings, and be able to browse contestants, assemble groups, and find likeminded invdividuals. Currently there is no all-inclusive app in which people can browse competitions and also other students interested in the competitions.


Target market

As I mentioned above, the target market is first year UBC Sauder School of Business students, who want to compete in business competitions. These students may be international or local and are looking to connect with likeminded people, under the context of studying. Business students are characterized as being highly competative, so this is a good place to start because there is a market already in place.

The Why — Design Inception Sheet

So… Why do people compete? We researched motivations behind people who participate in competitions, and found that they did it to:

Style Tile

Include mood boards, colour palettes, iconography, logo design, font choices/pairings, etc. Make sure to explain how it relates to your “why”.

  • Variety of colours to show diversity, fun, and playfulness
  • We also have illustrations in this direction to convey a personable tone of the app
Onboarding Screen Illustrations
Nodal Colours
  • But too narrow
  • Harder to read on small devices
  • We didn’t go with it, it’s a little too round
  • We wanted the roundedness of the visual language to be contrasted with a sleeker font
  • Hard to read on small screens
  • Easy to read
  • It is still sleek but not too serious, not too playful
  • So we felt it went with the mood
Logo Ideas
  • Represents collaboration, unity, hardwork
  • Too technical and boxy. Wanted something softer and more welcoming
  • But also didn’t want to represent the disconnectivity
  • Too boring
  • Shaking hands
  • Had potential but wasn’t descriptive enough
  • Client really liked logos with dual meanings
  • This direction represented both the letter N and two people connecting
  • Something that conveys the literal name of Nodal and also the brand values of Noda
Mid-Fi to High-Fi Wireframes



The highlight of the project for me was working with my partner. I learned a lot from her, knowledge passed down from other full-stack design students. It was really nice to be able to bounce ideas of each other and have support, in tough times. It’s good to be able to have a second opinion and also spread out the workload, come up with more ideas, and decide on the best ones. We tried to embody the “community” theme in our work by doing the work together. It was also just nice to be able to ask questions about things I hadn’t quite learned yet, but I felt bad because there was a lot of questions.

Liv Carmen

Written by

Hey I’m Liv, an artist and designer based out of Vancouver BC. I love thinking about stuff and talking about it too, so I hope we can share about it here.