Have you ever been confused by medical instruction, after leaving the physicians? A Visual Guide to Epilepsy is an exploration into using visuals as a primary form of communication in Health Care. Visuals are a universal language that has shown increase comprehension in multiple disciplines. I believe that a visually dominant discharge package will increase the patient’s knowledge, therefore increase the patient’s health.

Why Epilepsy?

A Visual Guide to Epilepsy is a publication, ideally provided to a patient who was recently diagnosed with Epilepsy to help educate them on the condition and the changes that need to be made in their life. The focus of this publication was Epilepsy, but the intention is for these to be created for a wide array of complicated conditions. I focused on Epilepsy for this exploration, as it has a big impact on the patient’s life, outside a health care setting.

These are a couple of images taken from the entire publication to help demonstrate the different aspects covered in the publication and the style. The publication covers: what epilepsy is, what a seizure can look like, possible triggers, adjustments for your home, seizure safety, what to do during a seizure (for family and friends), treatment options, and more resources. I decided on their categories based on other Epilepsy discharge packages currently being circulated. The publication is creatively and clearly divided into these sections.

The Emotional Outcome

The final product should be digestible, approachable, reliable, thoughtful, playful, inclusive, and unexpected.

The audience should feel confident, fearless, comforted, less anxious, and have a little smile.

I believe that if a patient has a better understanding of their health, they are likely to treat themselves better.

So this initial section of what happens in the brain? needs to be thoroughly investigated and iterated. My research into this was a frustrating process, but most sources refer to what is happening as a “chemical and electrical change.”

As a visual learner, I decided to draw through this process. At this stage, the processes were so complex, I needed to include language until it made sense. The results of my initial learning and illustrations resemble those of my high school biology notes, something only I could understand. As I got a better understanding I was able to synthesize over and over again.

I repeated this synthesis for every element in the publication.

Iterations and feedback were critical to the comprehensibility of the project. I often drew 30- 70 of the same drawing, posted them on the studio walls, and asked if anyone understood.

This example here, with the “staring,” was one of the many difficult illustrations that required lots of feedback. Illustration things like hormonal changes, regularly, and low contrast screen filters took a team to produce.

My original goal was to omit any written language, proving that visuals are enough to easily comprehend the message. After receiving class feedback, I acknowledged that the illustrations weren’t enough and that a small amount of written language was needed. I was fearful of this feedback but eventually came to understand its value. The written language you saw under there illustrations is there to provide reassurance that their understanding of the visual, is what I was trying to communicate.

Final Form

I believe that when a patient is given a physical copy reference, after being given overwhelming verbal instruction, it can be comforting. It is an object that you can be comforted in and confident with leaving a medical facility. There is power in holding physical information, that is especially impactful.

This form is also a more accessible means. In our current society, there are many generations who are unfamiliar with the digital world and don’t have confidence in using it. We also can’t assume everyone has access to digital devices, so the physical form would be more accessible to those people, as well.

I will be printed with a Risograph printer, allowing for my binding and layout.

If you would like to see the complete PDF of the publication or learn more about my process (there is plenty more) you can contact me with the button below.

Contact me!


Hi, my name is Kiah and I am a communication designer. Before this project, I had an irrational fear of drawing. I was passionate about the topic and found illustration to be the most successful method, so I pushed through.

As a creative, I enjoy challenging preexisting systems with unconventional design. Humor and personality are very important to my final designs, and processes. Outside of design I am passionate about photography and enjoy roles in art direction.

In addition to my studies at Emily Carr, I studied graphic design for a semester at Instituto de Design Barcelona.

Learn more about my journey and my work on my website, linked below!


My Portfolio!