Jade Milan  

Interactive Designer, Art Director + Artist

Work      About    Research

As humans, we are prisoners of the internet and our ability to forget, which manipulates our minds to think of what information is to be kept. By investigating forms of decay within natural systems, this project attempts to treat memory loss as having a discrete value to information, possibly exceeding the assumed imperative of lossless storage over time. By interweaving the bias for lossless digital storage and our often un-acknowledged cultural expectations of mental deterioration, is there a way to be selective in how we experience forgetfulness? My explorations offer the viewer a glimpse into the gap between perfect "digital lucidity" and the mind's altering of reality through natural decay. Using decay as a tool exposes the process of degradation as positive: preserving only information with which we–as ourselves, as "users"–find a deeper relationship.
Media Design Practices
Thesis Project

Project Lead
Design Research

Artificial Intelligence
Interaction Design
Speculative Design

Interactive Prototype
Adobe Indesign


Human-Computer Interaction
Natural and Artificial Decay
Memory Loss



Through these experiments, I used multiple API(s) to explore different ways of how we input and output information unnoticeably different from what we visually see or say, and how computers can recognize the changes of when these memories occur.


I used a Photo Booth to create an experience of being placed in a familiar environment, so your surroundings at that moment are being depicted by what the computer registers of who and where you are. Using visual recognition as a tool I wanted to show how someone else might understand these photos than the person who actually experienced it.


Using eye tracking to measure the positions of your eye in relation to the motion of the head. Using the tracker device in front of your eye I wanted you to focus on these collective images by looking at the wandering eye to show what images are more important to keep alive. Changing how viewers intuitively assign value to digital images and objects of selective memory.


You’re also visually realizing that the noise and sounds of your surroundings change your memories, which you might not notice. As seen here the mic picks up the person closest to it but also captures other sounds which translate to text to be a mix of both spatial and closer conversations.


https://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/meet-two-scientists-who-implanted-false-memory-mouse-180953045/ https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/how-to-instill-false-memories/
How do we see ourselves receiving and out put information?

Since drawing machines are meant to output a "perfect" copy of the information that we input and teach them to read, but investigate how can degrade a material or scramble the information. Since content is constantly changing, how does technology see itself to be able to continuously use or read the same information?

It's interesting and frustrating at the same time to get different results of what the draw bot would write or leave behind. Depending on when I input the content it would be able to ready it and print out the legible words or it would become scrabbled.
Machine Learning
Design Research
Rapid Prototyping
Material Studies

Human-Computer Interaction
Natural Systems
Artificial Decay

Adobe Illustrator


These are design exercises that investigate forms of physical interruptions within different surfaces or existing spaces. We as humans have our own way of creating an emotional connection to things that becomes sentimental value within our memories. Observing interactions that formed through gestures, manipulating an image; or shifting through time reveling alterations of an ecological surroundings of nature. It becomes a continuous cycle where new forms to exist as inhabitable interactions.

UX Design
Design Research
Rapid Prototyping


Instagram Filters

For example, as we move through an environment it becomes an echo of ourselves. Using processing at a tool I looked at how we unnoticeable move through space we take or add elements in our surroundings. By constantly moving we begin to remove data or pixels of the image, illustrating how constantly we use photos or videos of distorting them or saving them over time.

When do human gestures lose their emotional meaning when transitioning between sentimental objects and technology?

Replicating screen based interactions in relation towards the connecting with natural materials or objects that are sentimental to us. For example a blanket, we begin to notice the folds and creases that our hands create the use of national touches of the material. We then try to duplicate theses motions, as a touch or a swipe in a certain way to inherit from something this natural to give that emotional interaction to enter digital platforms that are mainly within a screen.

How do we see or recall particular memories? In what ways is an artificial memory perfect? In what way does it have flaws?

We focus on how to edit and upload an image to social media. I wanted to try to implement these techniques into exercise of how far we will go to create an artificial memory of what an image really is by continuously filtering it until it was manipulated as if it was effected by a natural cause of degradation.

Environmental factors have long impact on global migration flows, as people have historically left places with harsh or deteriorating conditions. However, the scale of such flows, both internal and cross-border, is expected to rise as a result of accelerated climate change, with unprecedented impacts on lives and livelihoods. Such migration can have positive and negative effects on both the local coping capacity and the environment in areas from which these migrants originate, as well as in their temporary or permanent destinations.

A couple interesting research how animals are found in unparticle environments. I was interested in the coyotes are being spotted more and more in unexpected locations in NYC. Or in LA they have building bridges for Mountain Lions to be able to crossover freeways and streets to prevent accidents.
Design Research

Climate Change

Adobe Photoshop


Climate change is a large impact and the force for animals and humans to migrate. Playing with natural and artificial environments to demonstrate an experience of environments changing. I created a simulation of wolves having to migrate to higher ground because of sea levels rising and humans coming in and settling on their territory. Instead of using buildings I used large white walls to give an impact on the force of humans claiming new territory which gives a divide for the wolves that have to migrate forward.

Simulating a tipping point on migration and high sea levels pushing of the idea on how there is a constant force on of being pushed out or having to move on. Climate change is a slow process but is a constant problem that humans tend to look past. That we need to figure out a solution to slow down or change territory movements that won't force previous animals or people.

Super Studio


Algorithmically staging the decomposition of a carcass. “Whale fall” is an event of a dying whale sinking to the bottom of the sea. His demise becomes an important part of life because his remains become a natural environment for nutrients to grow and benefit other animals and organisms.

There are different kinds of rituals and processes that occur when a species dies. by Looking at how natural deaths can become part of a rebirth process for other living species, nature constantly gives afterlives for the deaths of animals, trees, and even man made structures. the site of loss of life become a home or a source of food for an environment to live and allow rapid growth for other life to continue.

As the animal dies, you begin to see the process of “Whale Fall” where the activity of different kinds of other scaled species come to feed off of the animal. The whale becomes a natural structure that unpredictable changes over time depending on the new environment that latches onto the site and responds to what activities and resources are needed.
Artificial Intelligence
Design Research 

Architectural Embodiment

Adobe After Effects
Adobe Premiere

With the virtual perspective of seeing the stages of decomposition and the beginning cycles of new life, The viewer is able to explore the artificial life and self-behavior of other organisms interacting in an environment. Based on the actual “Whale Fall” and a real life scale of a whale, the viewer has a closer look at the other species and organisms that are smaller or not visible to human sight. by being able to zoom in on the bottom of the ocean and view the burial grounds, the viewer has the ability to observe the mysterious processes of organism growth.

Illustrating a story of one of nature’s rituals shows how a system works among other organisms in an environment through algorithmic media, such as processing. You are able to see how the behavior of organisms and their interactions, and how they affect the things that are left behind. the project exposes the negative connotations of death and even pollution as processes that can develop into positive outcomes in our environment. Nature’s Rituals gives viewers the opportunity to think uniquely about death and waste as a process of renewal and beneficial growth.

The project asks the following questions 

In what ways can we allow nature to use our bodies to become something else without polluting ourselves that becomes a waste to the environment?

In what ways can we deal with ‘the unknown’ – something that simply cannot be modeled and programmed into mechanical systems?
My design research process helped form this project’s perspective of giving new perspective and meaning to the idea of an afterlife and how I could visualize the end of a cycle and be able to visualize the end of a cycle as a new beginning for something else. Using the metaphor of a “Whale Fall”, I was able to see how its death became a new structure that enriched its environment. Overall, it is interesting for me to see how nature takes its course without the intervention of man.

Looking at the whale fall or a tree falling is a poetic look on death. Although the experience of the deaths is quite become alive then lifeless. I find it interesting to think about the different rituals that cultures take part in. Although a whale fall is not a religious ritual it is intriguing that it becomes a system used in nature. Thinking about if humans can use their body after death to become a source of a rebirth for other organisms. How can our bodies become a source of energy or a structure?

Dumping in the ocean:
Marine creatures and plants bear the brunt of the harmful substances from the dumped materials. A terrible act of pollution, but the truth is something much more beautiful. By being able to create a man-made, underwater structure, an artificial reef is typically built for the purpose of promoting marine life in areas of generally featureless bottom. Artificial reefs may also serve to improve hydrodynamics for surfing or to control beach erosion.

Subway Cars Being Dumped Into the Ocean

© Jade Milan 2021