drawing and writing

October 17, 2008 § Leave a comment

Well, my SSHRC didn’t make it out of the department. I have consulted with Gaalen and Anne Phelan, I can see the flaws now that I could not see before. I didn’t think it was worth taking your time to look at it.

Undaunted, I am moving on with writing my research questions. I decided the process is analogous to making a drawing or a painting. When I decide to make a drawing or a painting have to decide what size surface am I going to work on (small, medium, large), what kind of surface (smooth, rough, absorbent, waterproof), what is the subject/topic of the work (portrait, landscape, pear, hands), what is the method I am going to use to make the work (tracing, blind contour, observation, memory), what rules am I setting for myself (multiple layers, no erasing), and how long am I going to work (an hour, multiple sessions).

Because I stepped into the Seeds research with Don, I am having to ‘backwards engineer’ my methodology and theory from a work in progress. This being the case, I have tended to throw what ever text seemed to connect to the research into the ‘studio’. Then, when it came time to write a research proposal (my masters, this SSHRC), I have rummaged around, trying to make sense of the Rauschenbergian collection of theories, methodologies and previous studies.

I have an insatiable intellectual curiosity, coupled with an agile, creative meaning-making brain. The fact is that I will construct an internally sensible theoretical armature out of almost anything. I enjoy the process of that challenge. Unfortunately, that does not make for good research proposals. I understand that today. I’m not going to put a stuffed goat with a tire around it’s next standing in a pool of spilled paint forward as a research proposal.

I am drawing on my experience of studio practice to inform my next phase of development for my scholarly writing. Although I have a studio full of papers, inks, graphite, pencil crayons, oil pastels, easels, drawing boards, and a projector, I don’t use them all at once every time I make something. I select the materials, methods and perspectives that interest me, that are needing expression, and work from there.

For Anne’s 602 class I am taking up the challenge of getting my research questions written. As a way to get started, to focus the spheres of knowledge that I am interested in investigating, I have put together a series of concept sheets. My next step is to translate these juxtapositions of texts and terms into paragraphs to formulate a conceptual framework for my research proposal.

Here is the conceptual framework as of today.


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