The initial morning session was a question and answer session in which we were asked to look through the template for the proposal form and raise concerns and queries about it. Here are some of the questions I thought important and the answers I gained from the session:
1. How do you separate the rational from the subject/themes section?
The understanding I came to was that the rationale is something that, for the moment at least, summarises you as a designer, for example; Typographically driven designer with a focus on print based publication and branding. The subjects and themes become more specific in terms of audience, clientele, area of research, for example; The culture sector including music, art, film and even design it's self. There is room to become even more specific with these categories to really nail what your it is that interests you and provide real focus for you to spring board into brief writing from.
2. Are bullet points acceptable?
Essentially yes, as meaningful breakdowns of the fields of research and to elaborate if necessary in a simple and clear fashion.
And to be honest, that's most of what I remember, there were a lot more questions raised, some of them quite good, however my primary concern in terms of confusion over the form was the first one and now that's clarified, I feel a lot more competent about filling out this form. I'm also aware that I can go and seek advice from the course team if any other issue not raised in the meeting comes up.
The second half of the workshop was orientated around both solidifying the first half of the form, the rationale etc. but also exercises in generating relevant topics of research. We initially started by generating a 20 word position statement, before creating a list of subjects/themes and a list of skills that we wanted to use and we needed to use to facilitate the graphic communication of these themes. Picture below:
From this we were asked to make a series of 5 triangulated statements using these words around the phrase 'A ............... Investigation of ................ with a focus on ...............'. There are pictures below of the statements made, I made a series of 9 or 10 because it was an enjoyable exercise where an immediate focus for a set of research proposals and even brief writing became very quickly apparent.
Because the main focus was in terms of the design context brief and creating a design context book at the end of the module that compiles our research, we were asked to make a list of possible chapters/subjects based on one of these triangulated phrases in order to show how this process can be used in order to create and categorise our context books.
This exercise was extremely useful in sort of unfolding the system on which to capitalise and get the best ot of the module, although here it was predominantly used as methodology for the context element of the FMP, I think it's probably very applicable to the initial stages of brief writing so I have tagged this as both design practice and design context.