Constructive copying: Exploring the vocabulary

Pamela Schenk, Mark Parker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
19 Downloads (Pure)


Increasingly, concerns are being expressed about the negative effects of digital copying in both industry and higher education. A project was formulated to investigate the use of paper-based drawing methods for copying from visual source material in varied and structured ways and, thereby, to mitigate the adverse effects of design student dependency on screen-based copying. A Copying Vocabulary Matrix was formulated based on findings accrued through a practice-based enquiry where methods of copying were explored and a terminology of copying identified by the authors. A Constructive Copying Workshop was then devised for integration into an existing printed textile design course. Students were asked to respond to the words in the matrix through copying from the same visual source and were limited to pencils and paper. They were also encouraged to keep a reflective journal to record their thoughts as they worked. Their views were monitored during and after the workshop, and the drawings produced were then reviewed and analysed. It was found that a wide variety of images were produced based on either experimentation or strategic rationale by the students and that their visual literacy, analytical skills and understanding of textile design were enhanced, leading to the conclusion that similar teaching interventions into the design drawing curricula could benefit the student learning experience.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)524-538
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Art and Design Education
Issue number2
Early online date24 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - May 2019


  • constructive copying
  • copying terminology
  • design process
  • paper-based drawing
  • textile design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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