THE IMPORTANCE OF FREEHAND SKETCHING /RAPID VISUALIZATION IN DESIGN ACTIVITIES
The behavior of sketching could be considered as a key factor in stimulating and developing design creativity. I interested in finding out the process of design thinking by the analysis of sketches at the early design stage. This research aimed to confirm the importance of sketching atthe conceptual design stage and to explore an appropriate method to improve the efficiency of ideation.
Keyword: design thinking, sketch, conceptual design
Sketching in conceptual design
During the conceptual stages of design, sketch is used widely to express ideas and has been deemed as the medium of reflection-in-action. Sketches are representations that allow designers to try out new ideason paper quickly and economically. In addition, the sketch possesses the potential to act as both facilitator and recorder of creative acts, presenting opportunities for improved evaluation and the restating of problems [Temple, 1994]. Ferguson identifies three kinds of sketch, namely the thinking sketch, the prescriptive sketch, and the talking sketch [Ferguson, 1992]. The thinking sketch is usedto focus and guide non-verbal thinking. Sketch is made by a designer to direct a draftsman in making a finished drawing. Finally, the talking sketch is produced through the exchanges between designers and engineers while clarifying complex and possibly confusing parts of a drawing. However, the ability of the sketch is to communicate design proposals with others.
The argument given by Cross(1990), provides a strong supporting role to that of the
`Design Process' theory advocated by Schön (1990) and allows essential constructs like `geometric reasoning'; `three-dimensional problem-solving'; `visual-spatial thinking'; `naive-designers way of thinking'; `conjectured-solutions' or `ability to generate alternative solution'; `thinking with a pencil' as in the importance of sketchesand drawings; and `learning from earlier trials' to be discussed and brought to light in the design process. By matching the two theories against the teaching of D&T in the Singapore secondary schools, it is hoped that this present study will reveal the essence of such teaching as contrasted to current practice and to answer the research questions raised. It will definitely give a better andclearer picture of the directions to follow in teaching the subject - `a better way'.
Activities dealing with both precise and vague ideas,...systematic and chaotic thinking,...imaginative thought and mechanical ca1culation’. A question arises as to exactly how sketching does this. Whilst seasoned designers such as Buxton, Lawson, Jones, and others offer their opinions based on extensive designexperience, design researchers require more concrete evidence for the value and mechanisms of sketching. Current research has provided some answers in three ways: by empirically demonstrating the value of sketching, articulating the cognitive support it provides, and describing how this is useful for fostering creativity.
Design value of sketching
One way of demonstrating value is byasserting value metrics and measuring the success of sketching in achieving those metrics. Schütze, et al., (2003) report the results of a study which showed that sketching during design activity produces significant benefits. Their experiment evaluated the use of sketching by industrial designers to solve the problem of creating a backyard barbecue grill. Participants were asked to create a grill meetingspecific constraints. The resulting designs were evaluated against metrics produced by a panel of expert designers. Participants were either prohibited the use of sketching, permitted sketching for part of the design time, or allowed free use of sketching until they arrived at a solution. The results showed that groups using sketching produced designs of significantly better functional quality....
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