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for Hawaiʻi

March 2022 | Graphic Design

Creating infographics to advocate for the local Hawaiʻi community. Crowd-sourced input and integrated human-centered design to effectively push for social change. Reached over 10K accounts on Instagram.

Statement of Approach

As someone born & raised in Hawaiʻi, I have grown up seeing the clash between local residents vs tourists. In recent years, with increased digital connectivity, social media has been utilized as a tool to expose and video record tourists touching Native Hawaiian Monk seals or trespassing onto sacred sites. This results in the rise of the local anti-tourist sentiment in Hawaiʻi as residents are frustrated with the seemingly disrespectful behavior. Although the abolishment of tourism is a complex issue that requires long-term care to make sustainable, I decided to start on a micro-level and leverage social media to educate potential tourists of ways to be better "responsible" (not "ethical"... as it is not possible to be an ethical tourist on stolen land). As USC spring recess was coming around, I found that producing this post would be timely and effective way to encourage better tourist behavior.

The Process

Along with online research and reference to existing websites such as the Responsible Travel page on, I decided to survey ideas that my local Gen-Z community had about "responsible tourism" via Instagram question box.


In 24 hours, I received over 60 responses regarding ways tourists can better engage with the island during their vacation. As there were many overlaps in answers, I entered this data  into a Google Sheet to tally the answers and rank the most popular responses. The results were  listed as below. By sorting though the “data,” I was able to further categorize the list into two main sets. One set detailing how to “prepare” for the vacation — more based on ethics and  attitude; and the second set being a more direct action items tourists can consider while on vacation.

One popular suggestion was to "support local." Before going forth with adding this suggestion to my design, I decided to reached back out to my community to ask questions and investigate more perspectives.

Many agreed that although overcrowding is not great, it is better than seeing their favorite food places close due to the lack of business— which is something many locals experienced during the pandemic. Being able to think further and present these question to the community, was great practice for me to consider the consequences of voicing certain messages through media making. 

Design & Impact

When designing my inforgraphics, I really focused on keeping the information concise as a way to ensure that I won’t lose the reader in the process. This is because from personal experience, if infographics have lengthy text, it deters readers from taking in the information. This may be a result of the fast-paced culture of social media. Hence, with the goal of reaching more people than not, I reduced the wording on my  posts drastically. This is with the hope that people who are actually interested would consider reading the linked. resources to go more in depth on the topic on their own time.

I encompassed an inviting tone in my writing and tapped into modern graphic design trends to keep the reader interested. I disseminated this project through Instagram adding the tagging feature to recognize local businesses and grassroots organizations.


So far, my campaign has reached nearly 10,000 accounts and the comment section has fostered a space for locals to add to the conversation.

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