Category Archives: Methods

Method of Iterating

In this iterrating project, I tried to make a high fidelity copy of the typeface ‘BM Ikon’, created by a Turkish designer, Murathan Biliktu. The concept of the typeface is Anatolia’s vast landscapes and cultures, so it expresses abnormal and sophisticated stories through its design. For instance, BM Ikon adopted serif as its fundamental construction. But it also used a sans-serif approach to specific letters like T, C and K. In addition, he added characteristic curves to the letters like H, L and V to make the font look human-centred and graphical.

Murathan Biliktu’s new font explores the experience of migrant workers in Germany – It’s Nice That


  1. ADHOCISM by Charles Jencks and Nathan Silver (1972) pp. 39–53
  2. Murathan Biliktu’s new font explores the experience of migrant workers in Germany – It’s Nice That

Method of Translating – Written Response

We Should Really Be Concerned About
“Critical “for everyone?

To discuss this question, we have to start with the essential meaning of the word critical. First, let me present the three elements that Ramia Mazé proposes. These three elements overlap and influence each other in critical design practice.

●Critical Attitude
Designers must repeatedly ask themselves questions about their perspectives and social issues during the production process and have a critical attitude to incorporate new interpretations and social positions into the design practice.

●Concerning Debate
Critical practice requires the challenge of updating traditional values and formats. It requires thoughtful discussion based on critical approaches and discipline within the community.

●Pressing issues on Society
We must maintain sight of the purpose of critical design, which is to address social issues. We don’t practise critical design to talk among designers; we do it to raise questions about social and political issues.

What can be read from these is that the role of designers is transitioning from Author to Researcher. The reason for this is not only that the function of design has matured as a discipline and that its legitimacy has been sought as a research tool but also that the importance of multiple research methods, such as social science and cultural anthropology, has increased.

From this point of view, the social issues that need to be addressed are by no means the domain of designers alone, and that design does not necessarily have to be the method of presenting solutions.


However, the word “critical” tends to be consumed like a label in the current design industry. One reason for this is the ambiguity of the word critical. Therefore, we will need to examine the very word, critical critically.

It all started when the curation team vaguely defined the term for the 2007 exhibition “Forms of Inquiry: The Architecture of Critical Graphic Design.”.

Since then, the word “critical” has been consumed like a label in the Internet media, and we have seen many ironic design expressions that seem to skim only the surface meaning.

Designers can now easily buy good reviews and followers on Social Networks. In such a situation, there may be a certain number of designers who have an allergic reaction to criticism itself. However, we must remember that these criticisms are made not for the designer’s identity but as part of their social contribution.


Reference :

Method of Translating


I chose First Love by Hikaru Utada, Japan’s best-selling song, in 1999. Hikaru Utada is one of the most famous musicians and the first person who wrote R&B songs in Japan. She was born and grew up in NY, so she did not know much about J-pop. However, she consequently became a queen of J-pop. One reason for this achievement is that her parents are both musicians, and she was familiar with songwriting and singing from when she was a little child. When she made the song, she was still 15 years old.

Translatin experiments
I have tried three types of translation, linguistic, video, and sound construction.

Going through translating, I have noticed that some Japanese sentences, which are highlighted, do not have subjects. Hence, it is possible to imagine many kinds of love relationships, not only romantic but also general love.

To learn synesthesia, I analysed the original music video. It helped me pick up colours for my graphic design and know the tendency of metaphors which show a loss, confusion, disappearance, praying, loneliness etc…

I searched the instrument’s constitution, learned how to make a graphic score on YouTube, and tried to make it myself.

These references were helpful for making the final visualizasion.

#Final Visualization

The circle line follows time, inner lines follow the song’s progression. I reconfigured the lyrics depending on the process of time. Regarding white lines under the lyrics, which I made in week one, are vocal melody lines.


What’s working:

  • It was a challenging attempt for me to create a graphic score based on one complete piece of music. In this project, I succeeded in capturing all of my own emotions, reinterpretation of lyrics, and synesthesia elements obtained from analysis of music videos in one visual.
  • The time axis represented by the circle and the progress of the song represented by the inner line worked well.

What’s not working:

  • By carefully researching the relationship between each graphic score and the song in John Cage’s Reference, it is possible that my work has developed into a more abstract and cohesive output.
  • There is a possibility that the relationship between the organisation of instruments placed in each section and the vocal melody can be enhanced.

To develop this further:

  • By deepening my knowledge of synesthesia, I would like to deepen my insight into the relationship between music and visuals.
  • It was interesting to hear the opinion that there might be a possibility for multifaceted interpretation. Of course, presenting the research process can be convincing to the viewer, but it should also be a concern that how much information someone seeing only the graphic score can get a new perspective from this visual. One possibility is adding ingenuity for making layers to the interpretation, such as arranging symbols like Salvador Dalí’s The Persistence of Memory, that can help understand the meaning of the work.

Methods of Cataloging 

I picked up 10 books from the packaging shelf(688.8) at CSM library and collected 175 animal printed packages. As for experiments, I tried four types of sorting : chronological sorting, making colour chart, classifying the animal categories, and classifying the usage of animal images.

Then I noticed that people do not care about the meaning of animal packages even if same animal is used for the opposite meaning on the different package. I would like to look for the reason and hidden rules on packages.

Going through hypothesis and learning about animal welfare, I tried to make the original pork meat package which has more information about animal welfare and could be able to reduce the total consumption of the meat.


What’s working:

  • Going through four types of experiments, I could find my own questioning and context, and try to represent the package.
  • I could build the design using logical reasons.

What’s not working:

  • Finding the middle point between current marketing packages and ideal packages – but not so much shocking needs deep understanding of animal welfare. I am still in the process of learning, so that there is the possibility for making these information much better.
  • I actually did lots of experiments, so that there are still possibilities that I could explore of packages.

To develop this further:

  • I would like to observe package itself more deeply, and know how can I tell information through packages.
  • I could also think about another approach, not only packages but also other media.
  • I am interested in the history of animal characters as well. these understanding might help further creativity.

Methods of Investigation – Written Response

The question which I have thought about going through this investigation was the function and the essential meaning of knowledge. For most of my life, the meaning of knowledge in my head was similar to ‘information’, so knowledge was perceived as something that should be unilaterally input into a human brain from the media. However, going through the assignment, I have learned that knowledge itself can be an appropriate tool for expanding spontaneous consideration as well as the ability that people can look for their appropriate knowledge. In short, it is possible to say that active learning can be called knowledge too. In the written response, I would like to share two aspects of knowledge as active learning, which are a device for thinking and the ability for inspecting the information.

Firstly, I could see the aspect of knowledge for thinking from the book ‘Does Writing Have a Future?’, which has described in detail that with the development of printing technology, the function of writing was shifted from the speculative into the practical. As writers of the Gutenberg era became aware that they were manipulating types and unfurled the typifying mode of thought in all areas of culture. On the other hand, after the Industrial Revolution, information was to be pressed mechanically into many products for just transmission. Modern people could learn the style for getting the trigger to reach a new area of knowledge by handwriting.

Furthermore, knowledge can be the ability for inspecting the information. In this topic, it is crucial to be concerned about the interaction between knowledge and the Internet. Because the Internet is a tool for getting a huge amount of knowledge as one of the biggest media nowadays. The book ‘The Internet Does Not Exist’ said that the Internet could show a very particular world that has already become part of our consciousness. On top of that, the knowledge which was gathered from the Internet, which entire worlds made of contradiction, should be carefully estimated. From the above, spontaneous thinking is required in order to correctly deal with knowledge in the information society.

In conclusion, I have learned that knowledge does not just function as one-way information, but should be worked effectively by interacting with our human thoughts. At that time, it is useful to follow in the footsteps of our predecessors in making efforts to deepen our thinking through handwriting, and to get the ability to be critical through the use of Internet technology.

Reading List

  1. Does Writing Have a Future? Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press (2011) pp. 47–54
  2. The Internet Does Not Exist Berlin: Sternberg Press (2015) pp. 5–9

Method of Investigation


I chose Shoreditch Library as location for my investigation.
First of all, I picked up fundamental information.


I tried 5 types of observation, which are mapping, modelling, photograph, recording sound.

In the first week, I made a floor map to see the structure of the library.

I did modelling of shelves which is one of the iconic items of the library.
I found 7 types of shelves for adult area, and 4 types of shelves for kids space.
The main difference between them is that the size and the colours.

I took pictures of the return box for 5 times within a week.
However, I couldn’t find a huge changes during this period of time. So it seems that People seem to use the library for own working, studying and searching by computers.

I also took pictures of materials in the library and see what they have. They have not only books, but also many kinds of learning materials like cd, dvd, audio books, arts, computer and workshops.

 I record sounds on ground floor for three times and compare the tendency of each sounds from visualising of these sounds. There are not big changes every time, but I could sometimes see the big waves which comes from kids’s screaming.

Looking for the context

`While doing observation, I have thought function of library as well as why we are pursuing ‘knowledge’. I tried to combine the materials of my observation to these ideas.


I have collected the item that shows piece of citizen’s life and people can feel that library is made of community.
I found many kinds of bookmarks and notes in books.

I connected bookmarks to people in the library randomly. This accidental findings shows similar to the people who borrow books from the library find bookmarks and use it as well.

For explaining the next experiment for connecting me and the knowledge, I’d like to share the vintage books that I bought near by my home. I used these books to show the knowledge inside of my brain.


What’s working:

  • I could do systematic cataloging of the space and it gave many ideas for doing experiments in the library.
  • I could see books are not only material for learning at the Shoreditch library.
  • I could change my perspective about ‘knowledge’

What’s not working:

  • if I could find the big amount of book marks and notes in books, I could look for being crossed the stories of books and the stories of bookmarks and find the deeper context.
  • I used a puzzle as metaphor of knowledge, but it did not connect to my observation itself.

To develop this further:

  • I can apply architecture method for making maps
  • I would like to find the big context which contains both experiments going through additional observation.
  • Sound observation has also the possibility to find another small context.