An Instruction Guide for the First-Year Design Studio: Modelling of Visual Thinking


ABSTRACT Abstraction is an important practice in the first-year design studio and it is directly related to visual thinking. In addition, abstraction skill as a tool of visualisation in architectural design can accommodate certain connections between the two-dimensional and three-dimensional thinking. Hence, this study aims to model relationship between the visual thinking and abstraction. For this purpose, an instruction guide has been developed and applied in the studio. The guide consists of ‘find a source-analyse it-interpret it-synthesise it-transform’ phases. Main finding of this study is that research methodology reveals two main interrelated issues in the relationship between the visual thinking and abstraction. The first relationship is the nature of abstraction and the second is the transfers between the second and third-dimensions. While the nature of abstraction is established by reductive, descriptive, or discriminative approaches as common tools in the studio, individual differences come into play in the second and third-dimension transfers of abstraction. Consequently, abstraction practice results in different design behaviours and representations. Also, this conclusion reveals the importance of individual differences in the first-year studio.