2018 AMI Online Salon

Scientific American Mock Cover for Social Media Issue

Project Details

  • Artist(s):  Patricia Nguyen
  • Contributors: Patricia Nguyen  ; Richmond Hill, Ontario
  • Client: Marc Dryer
  • Copyright: © 2017 Patricia Nguyen
  • Medium / software used: 3D/ Maya
  • Final presentation format: Print
  • Primary audience: General

Project Description

Social media is a big part of our lives and many are unknowingly addicted to it. But, what drives this addiction? A Harvard study found that self-disclosure (widely done on social media platforms) was strongly associated with increased dopamine release, the brain’s reward molecule. Here, the emoji icons represent the dopamine molecule release. The phone and hand are both engulfed into the neural network to represent how attached we are to social media. This piece was intended for the cover of Scientific American, a popular science magazine, targeted towards a lay audience with a scientific interest. Overall, this piece uses the metaphor of emojis as dopamine molecules to communicate how self-disclosure, often practiced in social media, is intrinsically linked to our reward system and may be the reason behind social media addiction.