Design for Life: Research Methods, Design Thinking and Authorial Illustration Practice
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This chapter proposes that the emerging field of illustration research embraces the methods of practice-led research, and will argue that this benefits practice outside of formal academic research. The author’s practice-led Ph.D. research is the focus of an investigation of illustration methodologies within a research practice, with two interviews employed subsequently to suggest that they are transferable to professional practice. The discourse surrounding design thinking and critical thinking is drawn upon to propose that the inductive approach described here can be adopted to enable illustrators to be entrepreneurial and flexible in the face of changes to the nature of work. These methods provide long-term transferable skills, and give illustrators a robust set of methods to identify and interrogate their subject matter. In return, research can benefit from the performative forms found within illustration practice that can make its findings accessible to a wider audience.
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