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Journal Cover

American Journal of Bioethics July 2021


While Artificial Intelligence (AI) has shown promise as a diagnostic tool for individuals with depression, I wanted to create an illustration that evoked the feeling behind the ethical challenges described by Laacke et al. in his article about AI, social media, and depression. Throughout the process of creating this illustration my main goal was to maintain a sense of uneasiness between the figure being observed and their shadowy observer. Regardless of the AI figure’s good intentions, its presence feels intrusive as it makes observations without the seated individual’s explicit knowledge or permission. The individual may in fact be struggling with depression, however, their autonomy is being compromised.

Final Cover

AJOB Cover

Client: American Journal of Bioethics

Article:  Artificial Intelligence, Social Media and Depression. A New Concept of Health-Related Digital Autonomy (Laacke et al., 2021)

Software: Adobe Photoshop



My main goal throughout the ideation process of this illustration was to elicit the feeling of social media providing a narrow glimpse into someone's reality or how they perceive others. After an initial review of rough sketches I decided to incoperate stronger imagery of someone observing the social media user to represent the idea of AI in the article. 

AJOB Sketches-02.png

Revised Sketches and Color Palette

By using a contrasting palette of blue and yellow, I was able to emulate the feeling of isolation that can accompany depression juxtaposed against the warmth of the light that superficially touches the seated person. Social media is a filter that we see the world through and through which the world sees us. Depression, in its many forms, can lie just under the surface of what people share of themselves. When the light from the phone illuminates the AI-figure in the background, the harsh contrast between the highly saturated yellow and the blue-green figure increases the uneasy feeling.

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