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what do I want to know?

my PhD research in 10 minutes

I think I need to go away for a week somewhere and work on this

what do I want to know?

I want to know what communication designers do
I want to know what happens in the act of communication design, what role the active parties take and what they do


because I believe that communication designers don't know what they do


because of the work I did in my Masters.

This work showed that I often wasn't aware of what I was doing when I did the work I did.

also when I read (currently) writing by designers about what they do it seems to always be about particular aspects of design that do exist but are only part of what cd's do.

This writing I keep reading seems to say that design is about a refinement of things, that it is about how to make a good thing or how to make a better thing

when I could say that CD seems to me to about, on one level:

- making cool things
- making things that are legible
- making things that fit their target audiences style (and help define that style)
- making things that communicate the correct ideological/philosophical/social pitch
- making things look 'correct' (so that the recipe book looks like a recipe book, the death metal album doesn't)
- making things that are comprehendible
- making things that are noticed and noticeable
- making things that surprise and delight, so give their viewers/readers/users a valuable experience
- making things that please the commissioning agent

but about on another level:

- defining cultures
- expressing cultures
- expressing that which cannot be expressed verbally or through other means
- generating material form for nascent cultural tendencies/movements, and in such a way to discover what those tendencies/movements are
- creating a means of expression for a part of society
- engaging in societies conversation
- expressing ideologies
- finding personal 'truths'
- finding Identity
- focusing Identity
- exploring Identity and roles within a community
- allowing voices to emerge
- accessing knowledge we have about ourselves that we don't know we have
- showing us who we are

there is something here about 'material therapy'; sometimes CD can act to open the window a little bit, to reveal a little more of the iceberg beneath, to open up a little truth, or to provoke a little self-knowledge..

and it is leading through to the subject/other discussion and that paper I found about gameplay and how kids work and what they use their toys for.....

case-study: the website for megara; this allowed that company to communicate with itself, using me as a sounding board (punch-bag)
case-study: Gold and Silversmithing ad, they don't know what they are, and then together we do know what they are... so we are finding their character... and as the designer I am part of that
case-study: War is over - I find out what I feel through design...