Case Study Custom Medical Illustration

Taking patient education and branding to the next level with custom medical illustration

Custom medical illustration created for websites and mobile apps offer numerous advantages. Besides their great potential to tell the bright and clear story to the user, they are a valuable investment in branding, bringing consistency and visual harmony across different visual assets. Today, our case study explores exactly that: let’s take a look at how Apoteca Natura took their patient education app (and their branding) to the next level with our 2 and 3D medical illustrations.

Services / Deliverables

Custom medical illustrations
3D Medical animations
Infographic design

About the client

Apoteca Natura is a Network of Pharmacies with the mission of listening to and guiding people on their personal healthcare journeys. Their commitment is to put the Individual at the center of their work, respecting the human body and the environment in which it lives.

The Challenge

Despite having invested significantly in their patient education app, the client’s wish was to communicate the right information to their target audiences and to drive more app engagement.

The Impact

The quality of educational imagery has improved brand perception and helped better educate their target audiences, to increase their loyalty to Apoteca Natura pharmacies.


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The Goal

Apoteca Natura S.p.a. developed their first educational application a year prior to using our services. After creating the educational material for each app section thanks to the cooperation with Dr.ssa Vitalia Murgia MD, Pediatrician, and in order to keep their budget reasonable, they decided to illustrate their content with stock medical illustrations and animations. After the first launch, however, it became clear that despite the educational content being excellent, the visuals in the app needed to be refined to attract and retain user interest.

Most of the stock images used were far too detailed for their target audience to understand, thus rendering the educational material confusing and failing to drive app engagement. In addition, there were striking differences among the illustrations, ranging from format, to color, to style.

Rising action

After consulting and running an audit of the educational and communication value of the images in the app, we presented the client with a project plan to improve the educational app with custom-made visual assets. This included replacing the images in the app with custom medical illustration and infographics created with their target audience (and their corporate identity) in mind, as well as creating 3D animations to illustrate the more complex topics.

We proceeded to create a set of sketches for each module in the app. These covered conditions related to the functioning of the stomach, heart, intestines and male and females reproductive systems. Once all the sketches were done, we lined up all illustrations and checked for anatomy, content correctness and captioning.

Foreseen positive aspects resulting from these actions: the inclusion of customized medical illustration would bind nicely with the 3D models, eliminate the scattered appearance arising from having unrelated styles coming together. One peculiarity about our process is the attention to detail and the extra effort we take to transfer into these 3D models the quality of color combinations that characterize our illustrations. We can so create consistency between our 2D and 3D work.


Next, we discussed the hand-drawn sketches with the content reviewer, after which we proceeded to digitize them. Once this steps was completed, we presented the client with a color palette based on their corporate colors and finalized the images with their corporate identity in mind.

The gain

Overall, the increased communication value of the upgraded educational app significantly improved the user experience and, even though the exact correlation cannot be calculated, created a pool of well-informed users who are now more aware about their health and more loyal to their pharmacies. In addition, user’s comments reflect an improved brand perception, and UX testing indicates increased user engagement.

It has been greatly rewarding to see how bringing consistency among visual assets through a carefully designed collection of images has added so much value to the brand and driven customer satisfaction and engagement so greatly.

You can find the Apoteca Natura App here