UNDERSTANDING STYLING ACTIVITY OF AUTOMOTIVE DESIGNERS: A STUDY OF MANUAL INTERPOLATIVE MORPHING THROUGH FREEHAND SKETCHING
Editor: Culley, S.J.; Hicks, B.J.; McAloone, T.C.; Howard, T.J. & Dong, A.
Author: Zainal Abidin, Shahriman Bin (1,3); Warell, Anders (2); Liem, Andre (3)
Section: Design Methods and Tools Part 1
Automated morphing techniques have been proposed as a design support tool to generate novel shapes which lie between two or more polar reference images. The purpose of these techniques, employed in automated morphing systems (AMS), is to assist designers and design teams in the task of generating new shapes and finding novel form concepts. In this paper, we investigate the sketching processes of automotive designers in order to understand their processes of manual interpolative morphing employing freehand sketching. Results suggest that there are profound differences between manual and automated morphing. Specifically, these relate to selectivity, consistency, and completeness of morphing operations. While designers choose and transform shape based on subjective and purposeful intent, AMS lack these characteristics. These differences influence the outcome of morphing processes to a fundamental degree. The research describes the characteristics and clarifies the potential contribution of AMS in styling activities, thus assisting the evaluation of AMS in relation to traditional, manual sketching approaches.