My methodologies are a blend of goal and process oriented systems where there is a beginning and an end to the project brief but the idea generation phase isn’t always subjective to the progression of the selected goals, but rather subjective to research. As the idea generation phase almost always leads to an emergence of ideas that are worthy of development I might say that I tend to lean a bit to the left in which my methodologies are dominated by a more process driven approach.
“Research is a search for new ideas and understanding. However, in the research process theoretical claims are usually evaluated in practice and, indeed, the observations and experiences of practical circumstances often lead to new research questions.” (Brown, Sorensen) This progression between theorization and experimentation, development and evaluation is a continuing cycle for my personal practice and research methods.
The iterative cycle as it is applied to my own research methodologies usually look like this:Fig. 1 Shappee, M. 2018 My Methodologies
Cycling variables require revisiting research after idea generation. Academic research has been the driving force behind the idea generations phase in that it has led me in directions of research that I never would have considered. Using my own research proposal as an example of this:
The study of psychodynamics, analysis of personality disorders and the ties to popular culture, has led to a deeper understanding of the societal influences as the underlying cause of a narcissistic culture or the selfie who constantly transforms themselves before the camera only to portray the version of carefully constructed visuals to social networks. Adding to this, academic research has introduced other criticisms that have contributed to this culture such as the male gaze gone viral and the self-disclosure congruent with these variables. This acquired knowledge provides insight as to the meaning behind the creative output that will be developed theoretically and technically as method.
After the initial academic research and divergent thinking exercises, often times raise more questions that require other methods of research to inform my practice. Creative work must be presented as well researched outcomes, therefore the connection between practice-led and research practice is not only obvious but critical for the development of both practices.
Case study methods provide sound real life information to tangible questions that arise after periods of inquiry, equipping new data to investigate and develop. This cycles into the academic research, leading back to more experimentation and development, where grounded theory informs this progression of development, something the initial research may have missed.
As the development progresses, research revisits with new opportunities for tension between artistic expression and experience until an outcome is achieved. I have trained myself to clear my mind of preconceived judgements or visions, as they tend to create blocks in the process. An open and inquisitive mind supported by various methods of research and experimentation respond to different modes of creativity just as research uncovers knowledge.
Brown, A &Sorensen, A. (2009) Integrating Creative Practice and Research in the Digital Media Arts [online] https://eprints.qut.edu.au/27515/1/Brown%26Sorensen_2008_chapter_7_final-draft.pdf [accessed 04-09-2018]
Shappee, M. (2018) My Methodologies
Smith. H, Dean, R. (2009) Practice-led Research, Research-led Practice in the Creative Arts Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press