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Drawing as research: Correlating skills and practices with surgical training

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There are highly creative and meticulous elements to both fine art drawing and surgical practices, especially with regard to close observation, use of tools and interaction with materials. Both artists and surgeons have a dynamic, physical interaction with surfaces, as well as an ability to review and select key features from complex structures. Building on my own drawing practice and observations of surgeons' work I have been able to develop a method for comparing and evaluating drawings. Analysing series of images made by students at Kings College Dental Institute, London, I correlated their data from the HapTEL learning system which was used to practice drilling and removing caries from a virtual tooth, and found evidence of a link between drawing aptitudes and a particular surgical skills. My work supports evidence of positive application of arts practices, with the possibility of building future work incorporating drawing and surgical training.
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Keywords: dentistry; drawing; haptics; medical education; surgery; virtual learning

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 2019

More about this publication?
  • Drawing: Research, Theory, Practice promotes and disseminates drawing research with a focus on contemporary practice and its theoretical context. This journal seeks to reestablish the materiality of drawing as a medium at a time when virtual, on-line, electronic media dominates visuality and communication.

    This peer-reviewed publication represents drawing as a significant discipline in its own right and in a diversity of forms: as an experimental practice, as research, as representation and/or documentation, as historical and/or theoretical exploration, as process or as performance. It explores the drawing discipline across fine art, science and engineering, media and communication, psychology, architecture, design, science and technology, textiles, fashion, social and cultural practices.

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