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"Z00NAR" is an AR App that benefits both zoo and visitors. It can not only extend the experience of tourists after visiting the zoo, allowing them to establish a relationship with animals and obtain knowledge concerning animal protection, but also encourage them to participate in the zoo's public wel­fare activities.



Project: Self-initiated

About: AR design / UIUX design / Website design / Game / Interaction design

Timeline: Fall 2020 (1 month)

Tools Used: Figma, Miro, PhotoShop, Illustrator, Blender



The San Diego Zoo is one of the largest zoos in the world, where visitors can get to know rare and endangered animals. Tourists from all over the world yearn for visiting this zoo. The number of visitors has been greatly reduced during the peri­od of COVID-19, and staff still need to take care of these precious animals every day like they used to be. There­fore, the San Diego zoo is seeking more donations from their visitors to protect wild animals and plants and prevent the extinction of rare species. To help the endangered species survive better, I developed the AR App, which not only allows visitors to have a better experience while visiting the zoo but also enables them to have a better understanding of the lives of these animals and then inspire them to donate. 

Design Objective

The goal of my project is to help users to establish a deeper bond with animals and enhance their awareness of environmental protection. With an increased interest in visiting the zoo, users may donate to the zoo, which brings benefits to the animals. 


The San Diego Zoo has been launching different activities and proj­ects to attract more visitors. For example, they cooperated with Alas­ka Airlines to launch the SCAVENGER HUNT event with generous gifts, which revealed that the San Diego Zoo needed to make new changes in the traditional experience of visiting zoos. Thus, they organized this kind of interaction to attract people to revisit the zoo and increase user loyalty. The starting point is good but the scale of this activity is limited and can hardly reach a large number of potential audiences due to its low efficiency caused by its less sys­tematic organization. 

Benefits from AR Technology  (Why AR)



Zoonar - Ideation

The target customer of the Z00NAR app I designed is K-12 children, as this age are keenly interested in elec­tronic products and games, which will give them timely positive feedback and can get more attention from them. Therefore, this AR APP is designed to gamify the tradition­al experience to attract my target customers, so that chil­dren can have a richer experience by further interacting with animals after visiting the zoo. And this App is devised to transfer the passive mode of acquiring knowledge by visiting the zoo to the active acquisition of knowledge via activities such as games. 

With the development of technology, the experience of vis­iting zoos can also be optimized because people may soon forget this experience after leaving the zoo. However, AR APP can make this experience memory more impressive and profound. Moreover. it will remind them to visit the zoo. and also strengthen their awareness of protecting animals. AR is a combination of reality and virtuality. This idea is consistent with the concept of this project. I hope to add virtual elements to the real experience to optimize the en­tire experience and allow users to stimulate more emotion­al connections.


Information Architecture

To achieve the design objectives, I thought of some ways to improve the playability of this AR App by adding some games. I also designed differ­ent types of games and set different levels for them, such as racing with animals and tree climbing competitions. In addition, there are some intellectual games, such as asking questions about animals and their living environment. I believe such educational games can allow them to acquire more knowledge. 

There will have an opportunity for children to build homes for their virtual animals, which helps them learn how to take care of animals and strengthen the bonding between them. In addition to these games, a special section will be designed to pass on the message of the zoo's latest information under the help of small animals, such as fund-raising activities, animal protection campaigns and promotion activities. 

Zoonar - Information Architecture


Design Process

The below are the my sketches that explained the process of using the AR App. It shows different kinds of interactions between the virtual animals and children.

Zoonar - Scenario

3D Modeling


The animal characters and living environments are modeled and rendered by me in Blender software. 

Website Design

Donation web page redesign

Donate page.png
Donate page.png

New design

Previous design


Instruction Page of Zoonar

Final Design

This is the instruction map that I designed for the Introduction page of the Z00NAR App. The app allows users to open and play at any moment and it also brings them more interesting experiences and pedagogical meaning. In addition, Z00NAR has a more meaningful goal that allows users to acquire knowledge while playing on the App.

ZOONAR Instruction page.png
ZOONAR Instruction page.png
ZOONAR Instruction page.png

​Final Prototype

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