A scamp is a sketch of an idea that helps bring to life design ideas. It doesn’t need to be a high-quality drawing. The point is about creating a design quickly to hash out initial creative ideas. For UX designers, scamps are basically a wireframe with additional visual design information.
Designers create scamps in the beginning stages of a project to communicate their creative concepts to clients, team members, or their bosses for approval. Scamps are good for early pitch meetings with clients.
Scamps are often used to convey campaign ideas to clients to avoid getting stuck on details. When ideas are presented in too polished concepts, the ideas can seem unchangeable to clients and can risk being dismissed. Scamps allow clients to focus on the layouts and visual frames compiled versus becoming distracted by a particular picture, color, or font choice they dislike.
With scamps, concepts can be formed and presented without having the final design complete. No typefaces, written copy, or photography is exhibited. The question to be answered when presenting scamps is, “Does the concept work?”
While scamps are wonderful for outlining, planning, and visualization, they cannot replace a design’s working prototype. Be careful not to confuse scamps with paper prototypes. Though very closely related, they differ in how they are used and the industry they fall in.
Paper prototyping is essentially a scamp used to test out a user experience or interface project. It also often involves a script. These can be used to figure out user experience like “where can a person’s thumb reach on a mobile phone” to test out where to put the navigation button.
A scamp on its own is meant to be more of a reference for when you are putting together a design in an application like InDesign. The scamp will teach you how it folds and where to put what.
The scamp and paper prototype might look exactly the same. However, the scamp typically refers to a print design, while the paper prototyping usually means digital.Paper prototyping/wireframes/hi-fi clickable prototypes