|Client: Dr. Shelley Wall, Dr. John Wong
|Format: 11 x 17″ Magazine Spread
|Audience: general, popular science
|Tools: Photoshop, Illustrator
Lessons Learned: pathological illustration, color theory, layout, image texturing
Alopecia areata (AA) is a common autoimmune disease. Current research has further defined AA’s molecular mechanism and created new treatment targets. Existing visualizations fail to explain these new interventions to a general audience because: (1) oversimplification of the hair microanatomy—few hair cycle illustrations clearly differentiate hair structure such as “hair follicle” and “hair shaft”, preventing the audience from accurately pinpointing the AA immune targets (even if these structures were included, they are typically removed from the context of the AA hair cycle); (2) all existing visualization explains the hair cycle and immune response as separate entities, creating a disconnect between the hair growth dynamics and the molecular mechanism. This two-page spread bridges these communication gaps through a comparison of AA scalp and normal scalp at the gross, cellular, and molecular levels in order to provide a comprehensive picture of this complex disease.