Course Description

DES 198: Documentation For Designers (1)
Fall 2021

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Facilitated by Trace Manuel (second-year Design MFA) with faculty oversight by Glenda Drew

DES 198 directed group study — enrollment by instructor
In-person instruction (pending public health guidelines)

Tuesdays, 4:40-6:00pm

To enroll: bit.ly/doc4des

Documentation for Designers is an experimental course in how we conceptualize, record, and make sense of our work. As designers, we are immersed in the design process with everything we make. However, we don’t always have the time *cough, quarter system* to rigorously capture and reflect on the story of our process — how it felt, what it meant, what we might want to adjust about it, how well it aligns with who we want to be. This course opens up space for us to examine those bigger questions while exploring new skills for storytelling and self-representation. In the end, documentation not only lets us communicate our work well *cough, cough, making portfolios,* but it also supports our creative wellbeing.

This course is designed to encourage you to develop your own unique documentation practice. In a supportive and curious environment, we’ll explore many ways to capture and communicate your work — still images, audio, video, writing, and any possible combination therein. Your personal design practices and life experiences will become the focus of your inquiry in this course as you try on new ways of communicating your work to yourself, and yourself to the world. 

Documentation for Designers is for you if:

  • you’re invested in the health of your creative practice, not just the results
  • you’re curious and willing to play with new and unfamiliar processes
  • you have compassion toward yourself and your classmates, and you’re ready to consider your own ethics and positionalities in your design work
  • you’re excited to help develop future iterations of this course by giving feedback about your experience

If you have any questions about this course, please contact Trace Manuel at tjmanuel@ucdavis.edu

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