That Squiggle of the Design Process

The Process of Design from a great height. by Damien Newman

The Squiggle

Years ago I dropped a simple illustration into a proposal to convey the design process to a client. It was meant to illustrate the characteristics of the process we were to embark on, making it clear to them that it might be uncertain in the beginning, but in the end we’d focus on a single point of clarity. It seemed to work. And from then on, I’ve used it since. Many many times.
My father told me that for the design process started with the abstract, moved to the concept and then finally the design. So I used to use these three words, back in the day, to convey the process of design to my unsuspecting clients. It wasn’t as effective – even if I knew what it meant. So I found myself saying, “Here- it looks like this…” and drawing the squiggle.

Years ago I dropped a simple illustration into a proposal to convey the design process to a client. It was meant to illustrate the characteristics of the process we were to embark on, making it clear to them that it might be uncertain in the beginning, but in the end we’d focus on a single point of clarity. It seemed to work. And from then on, I’ve used it since. Many many times.

My father told me that the design process started with the abstract, moved to the concept and then finally the design. So I used to use these three words, back in the day, to convey the process of design to my unsuspecting clients. It wasn’t as effective – even if I knew what it meant. So I found myself saying, “Here- it looks like this…” and drawing the squiggle.

http://www.centralstory.com/filed/squiggle/

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One Response to “That Squiggle of the Design Process”

  1. Biffology Says:

    David,

    Ironic and prescience that you would use such an illustration to describe the creative process…not unlike a concept I favor.

    In mine, finding a solution is similar in nature to the hunting dog who tracks back and forth across a wide field until the scent of an idea is picked up. Once a glimmer of the prey is had, energy is directed toward it. The field pattern narrows until the prize is found.

    I once read a scientific article on brain wave comparisons between lineal thinking types and creative types. At it’s most basic level it seems the creative brain takes the leash off more readily, and while this can result in the brain getting itself into trouble, it can also result in ideas that make others wonder; “…how’d they come up with that?”

    Artists and creative types can often find each other from across a room. Somehow, they seem to sense who walks around unhooked.

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