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Design Ken Baynes

Design By Ken Baynes

Design by Ken Baynes

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How do designers do what they do? What enables them to shape the things that people buy, use and inhabit? And does everyone share their mental abilities? In Design: Models of Change, Ken Baynes draws on a lifetime's research and experience to suggest answers to these questions and explore the implications for designing and human survival.

Design Summary

Design: Models of Change by Ken Baynes

How do designers do what they do? How do architects, engineers, industrial, fashion and graphic designers think? What is it that goes on in their minds that enables them to shape the things that people buy, use and inhabit? And how far do they share their mental abilities with people at large? Is it true that everyone is a designer in their own way? In Design: Models of Change, Ken Baynes draws on a lifetime's research and experience to suggest answers to these questions. He uses the latest findings from neuroscience and evolutionary biology but also traces the story of designerly thinking back to the early days of homo sapiens sapiens and such momentous changes as the invention of cooking, the Enlightenment and the industrial revolution. Essentially the ability to design depends on the capacity of the human mind to make coherent causal models of our experience and the world. Using these cognitive models we remember the past, interact with the present and imagine the possibility of alternative futures. Design focuses on the future of material culture and so sets out to provide a favourable environment for the evolution of human society. So far so positive. However, Ken also identifies a malignant role played by design in the environmental, social and economic crises now facing the world. How can the energy and creativity of designerly thinking be directed to these key issues? A central aim of the book is to launch a debate on this topic which is crucial to the survival of homo sapiens sapiens.

Design Reviews

DR JOHN McCARDLE, ASSOCIATE DEAN (TEACHING), LOUGHBOROUGH DESIGN SCHOOL PUBLISHED IN DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION: AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL, 19(2), JUNE 2014, P.52 It's not often I get the opportunity, let alone the inclination, to delve into a book and read it cover to cover. There are some books however that pull you in and refuse to let go. I am pleased that Ken Baynes' latest publication, Design: Models of Change, proved to be a riveting read by providing an intriguing insight into contemporary thinking on some of the mechanisms of human behaviour that drive us to create. By way of an introduction the author sets the scene well in providing a rationale for the book and a brief historical account of the concept of 'models'; cognitive, material, as a process for expanding the imagination and as a method of communication. In the first chapter, Modelling and Intelligence, the latest evolutionary psychology theories from the likes of Steven Pinker illustrate the importance of the modelling construct in understanding human intelligence. The link with modelling and design is considered in chapter 2 where there is an excellent account, through personal practitioner experience, of a diverse range of design projects. A history of work is well contextualised and reference made to the innovative and seminal papers of Bruce Archer and Phil Roberts as contemporaries of the RCA in the 70s and 80s. The impact of Modelling through Design on Society forms the basis of the third chapter. The seemingly mundane tasks of everyday life are interpreted as strategic creativity, from childhood play through to grand architecture. Needless to say Baynes' experience in education is dominant here and he describes how we have a natural disposition to be creative and a fundamental desire to learn to do it better. This chapter continues toward a historical explanation of the development and purpose of specific modelling systems and the nature of design as a socio-economic driver. This leads seamlessly into the commodification of design and its outcomes in chapter 4, Modelling, Design and the Media. Here society is reviewed as a growing global consumer market and the implications of aspirational ownership in a materialistic world are all very apparent. A history of conflict, social politics, and cultural rebirth through to urban development are all considered as part of the story. The final chapter, Modelling, Design and the Future, examines the sort of future our society may have in store and how designerly imagination can positively shape or inadvertently destroy the environment. Of particular note is the author's criticism of current practices in Design Education. Baynes considers education undervalued and what's being taught in the classroom as a 'gloomy' situation. However, rather than, 'lamenting on the loss of 'traditional values' - ', there is a genuine call to learn from the past and look to the future. For society to grow, Design in all its guises, should be respected and above all, highly treasured. So, if you have an interest in design history and penchant for human behaviour and philosophy, this is a book for you. As a working text it is very accessible, offering an academically sound account in a popular science style. Educators wanting to inform their students of some of the mechanisms involved in designing as well as students wanting to understand the impact of designing will find this equally engaging. Other books by this author: The Art of the Engineer 1981 Skills for Design and Technology 1995 Design Education: A vision for the Future 2013 ANDREW MUTTER,PAST-PRESIDENT NSEAD, PUBLISHED IN AD, THE NATIONAL SOCIETY FOR EDUCATION IN ART AND DESIGN MAGAZINE, SUMMER 2014, ISSUE 10, P.27 This book contains a wide range of thoughts about the impact of designerly thinking on people's lives and the environment. Many of the chapters focus on the development of mental models and their implementation and impact. The central aim of this book is to challenge the sometimes forgotten debate about design as an attitude of mind and the importance of design education. Design: Models of Change contains thoughts and perceptions that many have wanted to articulate but never had the chance to say. There is a lifetime of thinking on models of change; Baynes illustrates this with many examples including how textile designers, industrialists and environmental designers have impacted on our lives. The volume contains models of practice and thinking that are both past and current. What he says is still as important as it ever was, that is, that the quality of designerly thinking affects the quality of your life. Professor Ken Baynes has designed a book that enables readers to reference scholarly design thinking and research in a precise and ordered fashion. The book contains historical references, commentaries on trends in education and research, and modern thinking on design education. The volume celebrates Ken's immense achievements and his innumerable and invaluable contributions to Design Education fields over the last fifty years. His leadership and pioneering work have influenced many people, including myself. Design: Models of Change is a personal history of research and a compendium peppered with helpful diagrams and drawings that you can dip in and out of and lose yourself in a minestrone of scholarly argument. I personally like the link that Ken Baynes makes about the power and purpose of drawing in design thinking and his conviction that early children's drawings are the origins of a range of adult attainment for example in written language and mathematical notation. To summarise the themes explored are: Humans use mental models of the world to act on the world. Designers use mental models of the world to imagine the future of made things. Everyone uses mental models to imagine the future of their environment. Media, marketing and design promote models of a high consumption lifestyle. Eileen Adams makes the point that the themed discussion is about shaping the future and this is very exciting and inspiring. However she states that the final chapter brings us down to earth with a bump and we wonder if our creativity and inventiveness threatens our survival. Eileen says with passion 'read the book and make up your own mind!' PROFESSOR PETER GREEN OBE, JULY 2013 A BOOK FOR EVERYONE This is a major book on a topic that touches all our lives and is vitally important to the future of the environment. It is a scholarly book written by an academic who is also a practising designer. But for all its academic authority the book is a delight to read - it is fun and fast moving, it engages our interest. It is a book about design and designerly thinking and is itself a brilliant example of effective and good design - the illustrations work well and it is easy to read and understand. Everything that people make has to be imagined before it can be made - first it is modelled in the mind's eye and then developed through physical models and drawings. The book explores this process through practical examples. We examine the everyday use of drawing and explore how human beings use design activity to create, shape and change their environment and the book importantly addresses our impact on the planet and how we may shape the future of our material culture. One thing that makes this book so readable is that much of the material comes from Ken's own experience as a designer and teacher. In many ways it is a reflection on his life's work and covers all manner of important fields such as cooking and gardening, teaching, town planning the environment, engineering and building - a whole range of human activity in which design is a central factor. The breadth of the book is staggering and it is one of the most important studies on the nature of design and its impact on our world that has been written in recent years. Design is not just for designers, it is a basic human activity in which we are all involved in shaping our world and taking responsibility for its future. Ken Baynes is a leading authority on these crucial matters and addresses with real insight the need to better understand how we may create a sustainable lifestyle for the future. He should be listened to and read, especially as he writes so well.

About Ken Baynes

Ken Baynes' initial education was as a stained glass designer at a rural art school in Devon and the Royal College of Art in London. However, he has spent his professional career working as a designer, cultural historian and advocate of design education. At the centre of his work, have been two main themes: the use of exhibitions as a medium for education and entertainment and the attempt to develop better strategies for teaching art and design. He was Head of the Design Education Unit at the Royal College of Art and a Visiting Professor at the Loughborough Design School. Working with the Welsh Arts Council he developed a series of pioneering exhibitions that explored the relationship between art and society. With his wife Krysia he has specialized in exhibitions that appeal to children and family groups and which emphasize making and aesthetic awareness. They have been shown in London, Scandinavia, Edinburgh, Glasgow and the United States. He worked with Malachite to research and present two television series on design for Channel 4. His books include About Design, Art in Society and (with Francis Pugh) The Art of the Engineer.

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION, CHAPTER ONE: MODELLING AND INTELLIGENCE The Variety of Models, The Evolutionary Context, Drawing and Modelling, The Origins of Drawing, Modelling and the Modern Mind, The First Engineering Drawings, CHAPTER TWO: MODELLING AND DESIGN Personal Experiences, Models and Print, Working with Bruce Archer, The King's Fund Bed, Design and Design Methods, Prior Art, An Iterative Process, Cool Acoustics, Problem Solving and Problem Resolving, Cognitive Modelling, The Theory of Multiple Intelligences, Graphicacy and Modelling, Professional Modelling Systems, The Digital Revolution, CHAPTER THREE: MODELLING, DESIGN AND SOCIETY Cooking in the Mind's Eye, Designerly Play, Design in Primary Education, Broadening the Context of Culture, Designer, Maker, User, Observer, Codification of Modelling Systems, Nature of Design, Focus on Economic Value, The Consumer and Participation, Modelling for Participation, Is Design Radical? CHAPTER FOUR: MODELLING, DESIGN AND THE MEDIA Media, Models, Multiplication, Media Wars = Modelling Wars, Children as Consumers, Houses as Social Models, What is a Kitchen?, Visions of London, Inside Men, The People's London, The Models of London, The Proposals and What Happened Next, Our House or Their House? Media Futures, CHAPTER FIVE: MODELLING, DESIGN AND THE FUTURE Benefits Bring Costs, Design for Need, Revolution or Amelioration?, Design Education, REFERENCES, ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Additional information

Design: Models of Change by Ken Baynes
Loughborough Design Press Ltd
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