How to research on the move - A Festival Story from STBY.

Following the biggest Service Design Fringe Festival to date, we're sharing the highlights of our talks and workshops with the global community, so everybody can join in discussions around our industry. In the first of a series of short stories, STBY, an agency specialising in design research, write about this year's festival workshop, learning how to use film and photography to document the user journey.

STBY held a 2 hour workshop as part of the Service Design Fringe Festival on September 20th at our studio in Shoreditch. Here we explored visual methods for design research, building on STBY's latest publication Viewfinders: Thoughts on Visual Design Research. Participants were invited to play with different technologies and techniques (e.g. GoPro, Narrative Clip) to capture and communicate user journeys.

We worked in small groups to document, edit, arrange, and present visual design research. We then critically reflected upon tactics and approaches for capturing everyday life in a visual and engaging way and the latest technologies used to do so.

During the workshop, we proposed a client brief to the participants. We found this evoked participants to engage in the activity with the end goals in mind, considering possible client needs and desires along the way. We found that each group used a different visual research method for capturing their stories. This raised discussion as to why and how they used this method, and what they would have done differently upon reflection. Moreover, the workshop stimulated discussion around the added value of visual design research methods in capturing and communicating rich and nuanced stories and experiences. We also encouraged and inspired participants to broaden their tools and methods in their design research "tool boxes".

The feedback from people attending the workshop was incredibly positive, with everybody saying they learnt how to apply new technology to design research, and how more visual methods can have a greater impact upon clients.

Thanks very much for reading one of the festival stories!

With love,

The Service Design Fringe Festival Team