Working on placing shapes and lines together – layers and composition.

Design style and working drawings

Lecoq understood that his training in performance could enhance his understanding of how other performers might learn. I would have to agree. 20 years of sports practice is inevitably reflected in my design/research work – whether I choose to embody/use it or not. This is probably why I will always do both – because the two are inextricably linked for me in a way that will always make me see things a bit differently. Designers bring different styles and approaches to the table – that’s important because different performances require different things, different teams work with different skill sets and designers certainly don’t need to have training in both areas. However, it certainly explains why I was never quite comfortable with the interactions between performers and designers – who used a shared, yet contradictory language that could aid collaboration yet also create numerous problems. On the one hand this knowledge helped, on another it became quite difficult. I understood training and performing as someone who did both – but had no appropriate structure through which to apply this knowledge within a design process. My research has been a journey in understanding, developing and working through a structure that explored, investigated and made visible this language. On a basic level, in sport, movement simply has to be understood better – performance development is the goal. Training in sport meant I looked at things in a different way – I saw movement first or at least at the same time as the clothes that were worn. That interested me.

Visual mapping – much like brain storming or word clouds. Designers often use this approach (see mood boards and pin boards – and the development of digital approaches such as pin-it.

Artists often use thumb nail sketches to develop ideas – these images are thumb-nails – the smaller version of a bigger visual idea… this approach enables a visual record, on a small scale – of a thought process; a way of organising ideas. In this case to better understand the way in which a designer might approach their work. So much information is developed during the research process, and so many connections are made between different ideas it can sometimes get overwhelming. This visual approach enables a re-tracing of these connections.

Iterative tracings

Finding ways in which the betwixt and between moments within the formation of different sets of knowledges involved in working with the moving body can be slowed down, extended and compared…

'There are times when the simple dignity of movement can fulfill the function of a volume of words.' - Doris Humphrey.