Enhancing Sketching Practices with Non-Graphical Languages

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  • Title: Enhancing Sketching Practices with Non-Graphical Languages
  • Author(s): Camilo Angulo
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: Design Principles & Practices
  • Journal Title: The International Journal of Design Education
  • Keywords: Sketch, Design, Freehand Drawing, Design Research, Non-graphical Languages
  • Volume: 14
  • Issue: 1
  • Year: 2019
  • ISSN: 2325-128X (Print)
  • ISSN: 2325-1298 (Online)
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/2325-128X/CGP/v14i01/1-8
  • Citation: Angulo, Camilo A. 2019. "Enhancing Sketching Practices with Non-Graphical Languages." The International Journal of Design Education 14 (1): 1-8. doi:10.18848/2325-128X/CGP/v14i01/1-8.
  • Extent: 8 pages


Design academies in Colombia traditionally teach freehand drawing techniques to develop ideation skills in students. This teaching practice promotes cognitive activity that precedes and becomes part of the materialization process of the designed product. Through the drawing of some quick lines in the sketch, the students explore and discover the main axes of an idea. This exploration requires several stages that start by drawing something abstract and end with the proposal for a new product. Nowadays, students develop projects in collaboration with members of different disciplines, and it is no longer enough for designers to draw the lines of a sketch to communicate a design idea to these interdisciplinary teams. Instead, they need to have the ability to combine up to five different non-graphical forms of language to improve and convey their ideas to other professionals and, as a consequence, develop more complex projects. Being able to understand these different forms of languages that complement the lines of a sketch at the ideation stage is part of doctoral research that was carried out through a case study at Jorge Tadeo Lozano University in Bogotá, Colombia.