Thursday, August 6, 2009

Insights from the Field: of "experts & "visual narratives".

Meeting “experts” and making “visual narratives” from the field

Prof. M P Ranjan

Image01: Four teams dealing with Water: Industry, Domestic, Agriculture and in Public Use – in front of their models that show the current level of understanding after having met experts in the field over the long weekend of research in the field.

Teams came back from the field work with rich insights about the topic that they had gone out to investigate through an active contact programme with “experts” in the field. These “experts” are not an academic category but include those people that the team members were able top locate who had a considerable amount of experience in the various sub issues that the team was seeking to learn about.

Image02: Views of the Water in Domestic space presentation showing the models and the rich elplanations made by the team members about the issues and perspectives that they had gleaned from their field research and meetings with experts.

Design uses knowledge that is available and what is available is processed deeply to bring a degree of understanding from which the design mind can launch the search for design opportunities, all visual, both ion the mind as well as in the visualisations that abound in the process that is used to bring clarity and to discover structure and meaning. The four groups met hoards of people in their search for experts in their particular domain and they came back enriched with new insights and many new discoveries and a fair degree of clarity about the domain that they had set out to research.

Image03: Team Industry had a rich visual narrative along with a fairly comprehensive structure to explain their findings from the field.

Learning about team work and about the value of images in this form of research was the key take away for the student teams at this stage of the DCC explorations. The metaphors made by these groups stil failed to capture the richness that was to be seen in the structure as well as the process diagrams from which the team had journeyed through. Perhaps a function of time available and the other activities that competed with the course, such as the Monsoon Fiesta, that coincides with the course at this time in the semester.

Image04: Views of the team presentation from the Water for Public Use.

Image05: Views from the Water for Agriculture team where for some reason the team has chosen a mechanical metaphor rather than a more appropriate organic one.

Prof. M P Ranjan


Kalyan said...

Dear Rajan Sir,

Your whole concept of Design Concepts & Concerns is flawed. Brainstorming,Categorization is fine, Why should people come up with large sized prototypes ?


Mustang89 said...

@Kalyan: Nice point. But, large prototypes act as a design visualization tool, helping us simulate the actual design process from a bird's eye view.

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