I have been a bit stuck with this brief in terms of generating ideas, so I decided to reach out to my peers on Facebook to gain some insight into what other people value most about bank note design.
I used a free poll software on Facebook which allowed me to ask a basic question to all of my contacts on the social network. I provided people with several answers and the option to write their own response.
Within 24 hours, I received 16 votes which I was pretty pleased with. The poll is still open to the public for answers and I am going to leave it for a little while longer to gather some further useful data. What I can see from the results is that people value the colour of the banknotes the most, this is a highly aesthetic opinion and it goes to show that beauty, form and aesthetics are perhaps values more highly than functionality and rational design. Following colour, the next most favoured visual aspect was pattern design. This is an essential part of any banknote, as it gives it a defined, unique aesthetic and makes a lasting impression on the people who have to interact with the currency on a daily basis.
Other popular aspects include illustrations and depictions of important figures/scenes that represent the 'nation' of the banknote. I can see the value in these, but I am not sure if I am going to be focusing on them that closely. I think I am going to look more at symbols and illustrations of objects, animals or landscapes that represent the origin of the banknote rather than depicting a portrait of an influential figure such as a monarch or a scientist.
Conducting this simple primary research has been very helpful and constructive, allowing me to take into consideration what other people value the most about money and balancing that out with my own creative preferences and aesthetic visions.