Title: A method to chart the structure of designers' clay modelling processes

Authors: Tjamme Wiegers, Raluca Dumitrescu, Wolf Song, Chensheng Wang, Joris S.M. Vergeest

Addresses: Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Landbergstraat 15, 2628CE Delft, The Netherlands. ' Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Landbergstraat 15, 2628CE Delft, The Netherlands. ' Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Landbergstraat 15, 2628CE Delft, The Netherlands. ' School of Automation, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, No. 10, Xi Tu Cheng Lu, Haidian District, Beijing 100086, China. ' Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, Delft University of Technology, Landbergstraat 15, 2628CE Delft, The Netherlands

Abstract: During ideation, designers often prefer physical modelling tools over virtual ones. If we want to make CAD more appropriate for shape ideation, it is important to know what happens during a successful ideation process. A method was developed to observe actual shape ideation processes. The method consists of video recording the process, coding the recordings, aggregating the coded data into patterns, sequences and parts, and finally analysing the aggregated data. A test case was performed to verify the method. The test case contained three clay modelling assignments. The activities of the clay modeller were identified and grouped into patterns. The majority of the patterns were performed repeatedly. Sequences of repeated patterns could be grouped into parts that produced a particular shape element and seem to reflect the shape intents of the test subject.

Keywords: case study; clay modelling; conceptual design; design process; design research; empirical research; physical modelling; research method; shape ideation; shape modelling; shape modification; shape parameters; shape intent; design activities; design patterns.

DOI: 10.1504/JDR.2008.020856

Journal of Design Research, 2008 Vol.7 No.2, pp.196 - 216

Available online: 17 Oct 2008 *

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