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Design Critique and Criticism

Going from criticism to critique, this guide dips into the history and morphing of the modern critique. Learn how to give better presentations, feedback, and how to take advantage of all the learning and teaching moments.

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Design Critique and Criticism

  1. 1. Critiques Become a better designer and person
  2. 2. FROM CRITICISM TO CRITIQUE Historical Context FTW
  3. 3. MY CHILD COULD DO THAT! Which — I assumed was what British Artist Jonathan Richardson the Elder thought as he was defining methods to assess artwork.
  4. 4. THE SCORECARD List of seven criteria individuals could use to judge the work of art.
  5. 5. “ Great News! Everyone is talking about Art which has caused the popularity of art to rise. 5
  6. 6. “ Bad News! Now everyone is an art critic. 6
  7. 7. A NEW CHALLENGER APPEARS! Denis Diderot, who was a prominent critic for the popular Salon exhibitions. Changed modern art criticism forever.
  8. 8. “ Is a good critic one who is right, or one who makes an interesting case? 8
  9. 9. AN INTERESTING CASE Separating opinion from fact and ushered in a new way to discuss art helped set the stage for modern day art criticism & critique.
  10. 10. Criticism vs Critique Deathmatch! JK, they are both important, just different!
  11. 11. Criticism Is... ▹ Judgement ▹ Assessment ▹ Evaluation ▹ Opinion based ▹ Historically referenced ▹ Impressionistic ▹ Aesthetic grounded 11
  12. 12. Critique Is... ▹ A Teaching Moment ▹ Process Based ▹ Exploratory Statements ▹ Why Statements ▹ A Learning Moment ▹ An Improvement Moment ▹ Featured Based ▹ Goal Based 12
  13. 13. Critique Isn’t... ▹ I like statements ▹ I don’t like ▹ Judgement based ▹ Design Reviews (approval vs improvement) ▹ You statements 13
  15. 15. PRESENTER The presenter is the designer(s) who created the work. Their job is to frame the problem and define the goal(s) of the critique.
  16. 16. FACILITATOR A Facilitator(s) job is to ensure a successful critique by scheduling, moderating, and note taking.
  17. 17. AUDIENCE The Audience (small group ideal) provides feedback by asking probing questions and using exploratory statements.
  19. 19. WHAT IS THE GOAL Before scheduling any critique, ensure you have thought through the goal of presenting the designs and what you want to get out of the critique.
  20. 20. WHEN PRESENTING... Be Prepared Have your designs in order & off-lined if WiFi is ever an issue. Test out conference room equipment beforehand. Double-check everything. Have A Schedule Coordinate with the Facilitator for an Email an invite beforehand, list topic(s), goals, and who will be presenting and facilitating. Don’t forget to Timebox. Frame Work State Describe what you are showing. Are you showing early or late work. What aspects, what constraints, and constructs you are working within. 20 Frame the Problem Explain the problem, discuss dependencies, ensure everyone understands and agrees on the problem. Frame the Why In addition to establishing & agreeing on the problem, framing why the problem is a problem can help establish the design goals. Frame the Feedback Reiterate your goals of the presentation and specify the desire for opportunities for exploration around those goals.
  21. 21. “ And remember… listen, learn, & improve. 21
  23. 23. WHAT IS THE GOAL As a facilitator, your goal ensure a successful critique in which goals are met and clear actionable goals are established and communicated to the team.
  24. 24. WHEN FACILITATING... Ensure Preparedness Is there a schedule? Was there an invite sent out? Where the right people on it? Are the goals and topics defined? Does the room work for the critique? Guide the Convo Ensure the group stays on topic and focused on the goals and wanted outcomes.Watch the time and know when to redirect the convo.Help engage all the audience members. Take Notes There will be lots of activity and feedback being given, ensure those notes are captured so action can be taken. Recording Audio is always helpful as a supplement to notes, but should never be the primary method. 24
  25. 25. CRITIQUE AUDIENCE ETIQUETTE Pinky out, Sir Charles.
  26. 26. WHAT IS THE GOAL As an audience member, your task is to help ensure the design is the best solution to the problem through complete understanding of the problem & effective feedback.
  27. 27. WHEN IN THE AUDIENCE... Understand the Problem Is there a schedule? Was there an invite sent out? Where the right people on it? Are the goals and topics defined? Does the room work for the critique? Reserve Opinions Avoid “You” statements and rather discuss the work or design. Also avoid “I like” and “I dislike” statements and instead focus on gaining insight and understanding on the purpose of the design. Ask Questions Asking probing questions and utilize exploratory statements to offer feedback on how the design addresses the problem. 27
  28. 28. “ And remember… The critique is a learning and teaching moment. 28
  29. 29. SHIT So does shitty critiques. Critiquing is an art and not everyone is perfect all the time. HAPPENS
  30. 30. How to Handle a Bad Critique ▹ Acknowledge the feedback ▹ Do not try to defend criticism ▹ Thank them and bucket that feedback Afterwards, decide if the feedback has any validity to it and attempt to approach it from a exploratory 30
  31. 31. Resources Information and inspiration was taken from the following sites. ▹ TinyLabs ▹ IBM IBM2 ▹ Medium Medium2 ▹ CreativityShall ▹ Britannica Britannica2 ▹ Wiki Wiki2 31 Google theme from SlideCarnival