Skirting the Sketch: an Analysis of Sketch Inhibition within Contemporoary Design Higher Education
Sketch inhibition is regularly alluded to by educators within design higher education (HE) and one with increasingly marked effects on industry. Over the past thirty years students have been observed to engage less with the manual processes of design development process in favour of other activities perceived as more attractive, to the detriment of their development as effective designers. This paper offers an evaluation of literature which supports the importance of sketching to the design process across a variety of disciplines, its anatomy and functions and demonstrates its role in cognitive support, as a language, a means of reflection, communication and storage of information and the micro-processes it embodies. It also presents observations from teaching practice and initial findings from interviews regarding symptoms of sketch inhibition: from avoidance of studio sessions to an over reliance on digital tools. It considers causes, ranging from lacking skill-sets, psycho-social, to technological and although further investigation is recommended to establish depth and enable development of an appropriate pedagogical framework for its management within HE, various methods are offered at this stage for use by educators: these include fine art exercises, a rigorous pursuit of quantity and even paper type.
Citation:Thurlow, L. and Ford, P. (2018) Skirting the sketch: and analysis of sketch inhibition within contemporary design higher education. The International Journal of Art and Design Education, (in press)
Research Group:Design and New Product Development
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