L U C Y   Y I P



Folkus is a goal-setting / good habit setting app that focuses on motivating the user to achieve their goal via illustrative story-telling. Once the user have set a goal, the app matches it with an adventure tailored to the setting of their goal to help them stay on track and on time with their ideal process. Driven by the visual motivation and the user's own curiosity, Folkus helps them to achieve their goal in an interactive and engaging way.

This project is a collaboration between Lucy Yip and Iris Yip. All illustrations are original work.


This technique of strengthening a good habits and pushing you to reach your goal via discovering new, interesting stories is based on the psychological process of positive reinforcement, a method of learning that occurs through rewards in established in the field of behavioral psychology. In operant conditioning, positive reinforcement involves the addition of a reinforcing stimulus following a behavior that makes it more likely that the behavior will occur again in the future. When a favorable outcome, event, or reward occurs after an action, that particular response or behavior will be strengthened.

Folkus focuses on personal growth rather than peer-to-peer competition, hence the application is stand-alone without community engagement options. This is to ensure that the users are not under the negative influences of being pressured to compare themselves to other in a community. Everyone has their own goals and motivations in life, and we hope through personalized encouragement they are able to achieve them at their own pace.

Inclusiveness is a huge consideration for this design. As an illustration focused app, it is hard to neglect the sex and race of the main character in them without feeling intentionally neutral. Therefore, we decided that for Folkus, the user is able to customize their avatar as a blob-figure, which gives them the opportunity to create an avatar that they can identify with rather than limiting the options to strictly binary / offer too many varied options that will make the process a burden.


Setting a goal through the app should be easy and fun. When the user wants to create a goal / habit...

Step 1: Define what the goal is

The should be able to describe the goal in one sentence, this step in establishing a tangible outcome is very important in the process.

Step 2: Duration and Milestones

While there is no "right" way to achieve a goal, the app prompts the user for a timeline of their ideal progress and checkpoints along the way.

Step 3: Customization & Potential Roadblocks

We all can foresee roadblocks on our way. This app allows for additional customization of checkpoints and motivation phases the user can input on the way to encourage themselves on staying on track.

Step 4: the fun part!

Once the user finalizes on the timeline and reminder setting of their goal, they get to choose from three adventure prompts to guide them through the progress of reaching their goal -- Explore, Cultivate, Build. Each corresponds to a different category of storyline that have a series of adventures matching to different length of goals.

The journeys come in many different lengths and contents. A vectorial, quirky cartoon style was chosen as the design language of the app. We are aiming for a positive, energetic mood with engaging illustrations that are not overly complex to create (given the amount of labor on the illustrators for creating custom scenes for each story). All of the stories involve background related to culture, history, climate change, science, etc.

Prompts under EXPLORE

Prompts under BUILD

Prompts under CULTIVATE

To keep track with one's goal, there is a map UI associated with the journey of each story. The user can keep track of their progress via the number of days checked in, as well as look at the number of tasks completed on that day.

Tasks are additional, small goals and tasks the user can set in this app (such as "do laundry this week" or "take out the trash before the end of tomorrow") in the form of to-do reminders. Once they complete it. They get additional bonus artifacts to rewards that acts as an additional factor to encourage the user used to documenting and using Folkus.

This is an example story with snapshots of pages. After checking in each day, the user gets a snapshot of the plot development, which eventually leads to the final story. There is some wiggle room if the user misses a small percentage of the check-ins, while missing too much will affect the completion of the story at the very end.