Research on visual ideation

I am calling all designers, architects, artists! Please be so kind sharing couple minutes of your precious time and fill the short form in the link.

Many, many thanks in advance!

Also, please feel free to share the link with your frieds and peers. The collected data will be used for my doctorate research, and I’ll be happy to share the results with you.

Last but not least, I would love to open up a conversation here, and encourage you all to share your doodles/sketches/scribbles, your stories and ideation techniques. So, what do you do, when you need to come up with a new idea? What do you do when you need to explore the given task?

All answers are welcome :wink:

I appreciate that you opened up a new thread because I think your area of research is of real interest to this design community in general and specifically the sometimes-fraught topic of sketching. You might also want to start another thread with the MetaSketching presentation.

The #metasketching survey continues. Every voice counts, so thanks in advance for filling the form out:
PS: You can remain anonymous now :wink:

Thanks everyone who already filled in the survey here: Metasketching #01 We have reached 100 responses!

If you haven’t done it yet, feel free to do so now. Every voice counts! many thanks.

And of course, if you do not like the form, if you don’t do any ideation sketching or if it pissed you off, just let me know. I would love to know what you think :wink:

It is bad practice to not use the same terms regularly and to use things interchangeably.

You titled this thread ‘visual ideation’, then titled the questionnaire ‘sketching’ then at the end ask questions about ‘ideation’ (not specificially ideation sketching). As this is all so ambigious and would be interpreted different ways by different participants your data is worthless.

I am saying this as an academic and published researcher.

Awesome. I am really glad that you responded!

In a way, you are addressing a topic which appears to be clear, but it is far from it. The understanding and use of terms such “ideation” and “sketching” is far from being standardized. In a way, it changes from institution to institution, from culture to culture. Did you know that the word “ideation” exists in given context only in a few languages? Most of the slavic languages do not have direct equivalent at all!

But you are right. I owe you bit more explanation: This thread is called “visual ideation”, which is a cathegory that includes not only ideation sketching. There are number of ways how to visually ideate and I would love to explore them here too. However, we are starting with sketching. I guess, we have to start somewhere and the Sketching section here appears to be appropriate. Please, correct me if I am wrong! I actually might be wrong, as the number of respones from this audience is near zero. Fortunately, I could collect enough data from direct addressees.

Anyway, I understand that you want to remain anonymous here, but if you want to open up a conversation, I’ll be more than happy to talk! Feel free to reach me out at


He is addressing how to conduct research, not the subject of the research. The way to conduct research is very clear. Your inability to distinguish the two puts your research into doubt.

I hear you both, and I see your point.

There is an intention that might be hidden to you. I’ll be happy to explain.

No, you are still definitely missing the point. If you’re not even consistent in using the terms yourself, how are people undertaking your questionnaire going to be giving results that align with what you think you are asking? Any competent academic will dismiss your results if this is for your studies.

For example, this is how I would definite and interpret the different terms:

Ideation = idea creation. You can create ideas and communicate them verbally - this is not uncommon when involving non-designers in the design process who don’t sketch (e.g. people from marketing and sales, end users, etc.). This is not specific to sketching.

Sketching = low fidelity drawings used to visually communicate. This is not specific to the creation of new ideas.

Ideation sketching = the visual record of ideas created through sketching. This is specific.

Not all ideation is sketched. Not all sketching is ideation. You don’t see a difference between any of these words, but it doesn’t mean people filling in the questionnaire don’t.

Some people ideate straight in sketch models (card/foam/etc), or in Illustrator, or CAD, depending on what is being designed. It is still ideation, but it is not ideation sketching.