Tuesday, March 17, 2009

relating processes

how similar can they be?

One might not immediately link writing a story to designing a piece of work. However, once looked at more closely, it is easy to relate the two processes. The design process and a story [process] are extremely similar. In a way, a design process tells a story. But to be more general, both the writing process and design process start simple and develop and build from previous ideas : there is always a beginning, middle and end.

For any story or design, it needs to start with an idea that will be able to develop. By brainstorming, a person can make a storyboard or grid layout that shows the process of the story or the ideas and meanings of a design. In a story, it is essential that the author have an initial theme. Without a theme, the reader is going to get bored and it will not be a success. Same as a design : a design must have a purpose or meaning that may be portrayed through symbolism.

Research must be conducted and after general ideas have been set up, a foundation must be set. In a story, the reader must be informed in the beginning of characters, setting and point of view. These are the elements of a story, which mesh with the elements of design including an inspiration, a precedent and a design that is audience driven. Materials are gathered and a prompt is made for a new design. Each character in a story create the mood similar to how each design and designer has its own individual “character”. Also, most stories or designs are based off of something else, making precedents a great idea starter. Once this simple structure is established, a design or a story can develop further.

Ideas then develop and change both in a story and through a design. Once a foundation is set, the characters in a story can build and head to the overall plot. In design, different models are constructed as critiques change ideas and revisions are always made. In both cases, the processes go through translation and problem solving occurs, as issues need to be fixed. Problems happen either in the overall meaning and craft of a design or the characters in stories battling a situation or a writer having an actual mental mind block. Sometimes flare is needed or exaggeration is beneficial as the expression of ideas may be weak. And I feel, the most important part of both processes is detail – if a designer or writer does not pay close attention to detail, the pieces loses potential and overall greatness.

Details, flare and expression all lead up to the processes ultimate high. In stories specifically, the climax is the highest point of the story for the reader. Also reflected in design, it is the moment at which there is the greatest amount of interest and emotion. Every part of the story or design has now been well-crafted, interactive with audience and distinctly unified. Every piece of information has been communicated to the viewer without confusion and the concept is easily marked. The journey is coming to a close and in order to be successful, the final model or last sentence must reflect a sense of commodity, firmness and delight in both processes. This is the evidence of a well-designed process. This is the point in both processes at which the outcome of the conflict can be predicted.

The end for both a story and a design is the final viewing. A story is built to finally be complete and then be read by people, whereas a design is completed and then viewed by professors, fellow students or the community. A grade or review is then constructed giving feedback to the long, strenuous process of both creating a story and coming up with a design.

No comments: