Abstract

While combining materials as sources of inspiration is a familiar strategy in design ideation, the intricacy of how materials affect the emergence of concepts has not been fully examined. This paper offers a detailed analysis of a sequence of a design ideation workshop using conceptual blending as an explanatory model to pry open the complexity of this activity, showing how research on design materials improves insight into how a design concept emerges. We show this empirically in a second-by-second analysis of a card-based design ideation episode using a multi-touch surface table. We offer process-analytical evidence for the case that manipulation of design materials helps stabilize an emerging concept, as conceptual blending research has shown by analyzing artifacts, and extend this work by showing the dynamic interplay between the emerging conceptual blend and participants’ collaborative interaction with the materials. Our study advances understanding of interaction with materials in design ideation and aims to facilitate future research on how materials support conceptual blending as a useful model of how design concepts emerge.

Keywords:

design materials; conceptual blending; sources of inspiration; ideation

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

Share

COinS
 
Jun 25th, 12:00 AM

How Materials Support Conceptual Blending in Ideation

While combining materials as sources of inspiration is a familiar strategy in design ideation, the intricacy of how materials affect the emergence of concepts has not been fully examined. This paper offers a detailed analysis of a sequence of a design ideation workshop using conceptual blending as an explanatory model to pry open the complexity of this activity, showing how research on design materials improves insight into how a design concept emerges. We show this empirically in a second-by-second analysis of a card-based design ideation episode using a multi-touch surface table. We offer process-analytical evidence for the case that manipulation of design materials helps stabilize an emerging concept, as conceptual blending research has shown by analyzing artifacts, and extend this work by showing the dynamic interplay between the emerging conceptual blend and participants’ collaborative interaction with the materials. Our study advances understanding of interaction with materials in design ideation and aims to facilitate future research on how materials support conceptual blending as a useful model of how design concepts emerge.

 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.