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Writing experiments with a lateral leaning

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The drawing and writing experiment that I offered at the Centre of Learning and Teaching in Art and Design (CLTAD) conference in Berlin, 2010 is related to my Ph.D. research (based at Leeds Metropolitan University). The research centres around what I am calling the lateral or supra-rational sides of designing processes. While the term lateral was originally made popular by de Bono (1967) in his book Lateral Thinking, its association in the research project embraces the kinds of thinking and making connected to ideation, visualization, intuition and other elements of a sphere of practice that are harder to contain and evidence within orthodox Humanities approaches to academic research. Schon (1983) in The Reflective Practitioner, Law on Beyond Method: Mess (2004) and tangentially, in terms of contemplating a network of practice, Lefebvre's Rhythmanalysis (1992) have all further influenced my research. The research project's particular portrait of processes emerged, in a first stage, from interviews with design students, designers/tutors and young designers in Leeds and at the Royal College of Art. The second, more speculative stage of research asks what might happen if such subject matter and such modes of practice are imposed on writing culture. The drawing and writing experiment in Berlin was a hands-on exploration of the theme of Observation.

Keywords: discussion; drawing; experiment; observation; participatory; writing practices

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Royal College of Arts/Leeds Metropolitan University. 2: University for the Creative Arts.

Publication date: 2010-12-01

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  • The Journal of Writing in Creative Practice is the official organ of the Writing Purposefully in Art and Design (Writing PAD) network. It offers art and design institutions an arena in which to explore and develop the notion of thinking through writing as a parallel to visual discourse in art and design practice. The journal aims to extend the debates to all national and international higher educational art and design institutions.
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