research, scientific or useless factoid?

“How does it make you feel?”

Having a strong hatred of anything involving science, I thoroughly enjoyed these readings defining scientific research and research as a whole. I particularly took a liking to The Atlantic articles regarding design research in the business world. It was nice to see a simplistic definition of research (“any gathering of data, information and facts for the advancement of knowledge” Martyn Shuttleworth) and how it does not at all hold the value it portrays. If surfing the internet is conducive to research, then I must have a PhD in research. Anyone can say that their research proved factual, when ultimately, they may be full of sh*t. Yet when we hear “research” it immediately holds value to the situation.

Scientific Research, however, involves many case studies and experiments and variables…blah blah blah…yet it holds even more value since some amount of time was spent looking into a hypothesis. It also may have many large words attached that makes us immediately zone out, eyes glazed. Big words and fancy experiments lead us to accept what is being said without even looking into it further. This happens all too often.

I have recently started a clothing company (IMAGE ABOVE) and it is quite the experience molding together business and fashion design. Just designing the logo took me 6 weeks. 6 WEEKS! I hired a designer who had just graduated from a renowned art school, thinking we would pump out a logo in a day or so. When sitting down with investors at one table and design geeks at another, it was as if we were speaking in tongues. The design that I chose was very fitting to me and my personality as well as the entire vision of the company. It was immediately shot down by the investors because there was no research, design research or scientific, that showed people positively responding to the logo. They wanted yet another 6 week study showing different image ideas and asking people their personal feelings and why they chose certain images. I could’ve punched a baby. Needless to say, I did not have investors long because I was more drawn to the “freedom” of designing without any research or reason. I liked that McAllister ended with “this means not cheapening design by reducing it to a mechanical process”, showing that no matter how much research or how many case studies or science mock-ups one could have, at the end of the day, design is a free thought and dynamic stance that few may rationally understand.


4 thoughts on “research, scientific or useless factoid?

  1. I sit on a weird line as an artist. I have a desire to make things creative and different, but my personality craves being controlling and having clear cut answers and results. If I was an individual who was trying to bring a product to market I would enjoy a combination of marketing and design research.That being said i do feel people put too much weight on graphs, numbers,and statistics.

  2. I agree! Marketing and research when trying to sell a brand or a product is indeed a necessity! I think that your personal stance is quite perfect!! The artist creativity and the control needed to run a successful business. Can I hire you?! 🙂

  3. I enjoyed your response. The text was engaging. And I agree with you when you say believing in complicated experiments, which may or may not show promising results, purely because they are an… wait for it… EXPERIMENT (Ooooh, aaaahhh)… is foolish. Science in itself is a giant tub of bubbling theories. Well supported, of course, but half the people on the planet probably couldn’t tell you otherwise.

  4. I think it’s cool you have an aversion to science and that was your impetus for taking this class. We will never be able to squeeze every good idea into the parameters we see fit. Some things just come from the ether and there’s no forcing or repeating them. Research has its place, but to undiscerningly subject every idea to a dry routine will beat the life out of it and leave you with tried and true–but often stale results.

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