An 11 billion drawing crit; the pedagogical value in networked gaming and drawing online.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Presented at DRN conference for International Drawing and Cognition Research, 24-26 October, at Teachers College Columbia University and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the city of New York, USA

With over 11 billion drawings made through the Zynga app ‘Draw Something’ and the increased use of portable touch screen devices and creative apps. Can reflecting on this make a valuable contribution to drawing research and in particular does it have a role in creative education?

Though many apps may be defined as addictive games and the interest or quality of the drawings themselves may be questionable there are aspects of the process that reflect certain definitions of drawing; the pleasure in gesture, the sharing of a creative endeavour, communication and interpretation. As the apps get more intuitive and powerful, more possibilities become available for the user. So even young children can now make relatively complex videos and collages and immediately share it with their social network.

Art and design education is being increasingly challenged by cuts and a progressively narrow curriculum agenda, this despite the demand for an increasingly adaptable and creative workforce. Can the increase in this interactive, and play driven culture explore some of the traditional areas that Art and Design education addresses?

For the last 3 years I have worked with undergraduate Design students, developing a research project creating illustrative responses to very particular locations that are tagged and documented on a digital map and shared online. The results are intriguing in reflecting, not only on the alternative collaborative city guide that develops through the network, but also on the drawn responses to the locations and the online presentation of it. Questions about physicality, reportage, ownership and value have arisen through the research.

By reflecting on research into gaming culture and its educational value alongside research into the interpreting drawing I pose the question do artists and designers need to take more creative ownership of these digital devices and social networks?
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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