Sketching and gardening
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  • Looking at gardening as a way to both inspire design practice and as a site for design The two are logically connected. Gardening is one of those deeply human activities, like cooking, that seems to be both universal and particular, everyday and extraordinary all at once. It allows us to discuss a tremendously exciting set of ideas - how we envision public and private spaces, leisure and labor, creativity and pragmatism. Gardening, thus, is a good example of creativity at work, and as such an interesting way to think about popular - little d - design. It’s also, because it’s so widespread and so popular in groups that we don’t usually think of as being technology-centered, a challenging and compelling site to design FOR. Gardening is like and unlike how we usually imagine hardware sketching. What can we learn from it? What can’t we learn from it?


  • 1. Cultivating your own garden: Sketching, self-fashioning, and sharing Elizabeth Goodman UC Berkeley School of Information
  • 2. About me A bit about me
  • 3. Definition of sketching Sketching: a brief reminder The key tool to support design cognition remains the traditional sketch. It seems to support and facilitate the uncertain, ambiguous and exploratory nature of conceptual design activity. – Nigel Cross, Designerly Ways of Knowing
  • 4. Gardening Seeing like a gardener Half the interest of a garden is the constant exercise of the imagination. – Mrs. C.W. Earle, Pot-Pourri from a Surrey Garden , 1897
  • 5. Self-fashioning Self-fashioning
  • 6. Time Working with the seasons By the time one is eighty, it is said, there is no longer a tug of war in the garden…. All is at last in balance and all is serene. The gardener is usually dead, of course. – Henry Mitchell, The Essential Earthman , 1981
  • 7. Sharing and gardens Sharing and ownership
  • 8. So what can or should we apply to sketching in hardware?
    • Onwards!
    There are no gardening mistakes, only experiments. – Janet Kilburn Philips
  • 9.
    • egoodman @