Maddy Cha

UN SDG 14.1 Overfishing

motion graphics

Fall 2018


United Nations SDG Awareness

Through concept creation and digital prototyping, I created a short animation with the purpose of bringing awareness to the issue of overfishing. This was a response to the 14.4 Sustainable Development Goal for 2030. I utilized a more playful style of illustrations and movements in order to appeal to a younger audience.



To start off, I began researching the 2030 agenda for sustainable development by the United Nations. From here, I decided to focus more on Goal 14: “Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development“. More specifically, I focused on 14.4: “By 2020, effectively regulate harvesting and end overfishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and destructive fishing practices and implement science-based management plans, in order to restore fish stocks in the shortest time feasible, at least to levels that can produce maximum sustainable yield as determined by their biological characteristics”. I also started to familiarize myself with the United Nations brand guidelines.


Initial Storyboarding

After pitching my concept, I started to storyboard how I wanted my narrative to play out. I ended up making two different storyboards that attempted to give off a similar message.


I wanted to try and test something whimsical and humorous in nature through this storyboard. Rather than focus more on the issue of overfishing, I wanted to make it more clear what the audience could do to put an end to overfishing.


However, in this example, I put more of a focus on the issue, using repetition as a means of communicating the scale of the problem. I pitched these storyboards to a variety of my peers, and ended up deciding to move forward with the latter.

Working with Brand Guidelines

Before jumping in to the visuals, I worked on familiarizing myself with the United Nation’s SDG brand guidelines, with a focus on color and typography. This understanding helped me to more quickly hone in on the elements of my visual style that I wanted to use to communicate.


Visual Variables

I started by creating a fish, which I didn’t want to be too specific in nature. While being based on the blackfin cisco (a species that was recently marked as extinct), I kept the colors and forms a little more generalized.


Once I had figured out which colors I wanted to employ, I began setting up keyframes that I would be showcasing in my video. Creating each of these assets in advance made the transition to After Effects more efficient.



Once I had created all of my assets, I created a compositions in After Effects combining all of the information to communicate the issue.



This project gave me a greater appreciation and understanding of underlying concepts and how they influence and shape the design process. Through working with Illustrator and After Effects in tandem, I also figured out an efficient work flow for myself that allowed me to experiment and iterate quickly to come up with a solution that was satisfactory.