1st Edition

Envisioning Collaboration
Group Verbal-visual Composing in a System of Creativity

ISBN 9780895034007
Published March 15, 2011 by Routledge
218 Pages

USD $195.00

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Book Description

The dissemination of desktop publishing and web authoring software has allowed nearly everyone in industrialized countries to combine verbal and visual symbols into text. Serious multimodal projects often demand extensive teamwork, especially in the workplace. But how can collaboration engaging such different traditions of expression be conducted effectively? To address this question, Envisioning Collaboration traces the composing processes of expert graphic artists and writers preparing advertising campaigns to retain a vital national account. It examines the influences on individual and dyadic composing processes of what Csikszentmihalyi terms "the domain," in this case the disciplinary knowledge of advertising, and "the field," in this case the surrounding economic conditions and client, vendor, customer, and agency executive gatekeepers.

 Based on a 460-hour participant-observation and intensive computerized data analysis, Envisioning Collaboration is the first book to meticulously examine collaborative creative processes at an award-winning advertising agency, including audience analysis, branding, collaborative "moves," power and conflict management, uses of humor, degree of mindfulness, and effectiveness. The findings indicate the role of concepts in generating common texts by artists and writers, the role of the visual in individuals' composing, verbal-visual rhetorical elements in processes and products, and which verbal-visual techniques were most generative. Findings are related to pertinent research in technical and business writing, rhetoric and composition, and some key research in visual design, communication, advertising, neurolinguistics, management, and psychology. The book concludes with a pedagogical/training unit incorporating "gateway activities" for effective verbal-visual composition and collaboration.

Table of Contents


CHAPTER 1: Introductory Framework and Overview
 Conceptual Framing
 Contextual Framing
 Overview of the Study and Completion of the Framework

CHAPTER 2: Ping-Pong, Part I: Collaborative Brainstorming of an “Insight-Intensive” Team
 First Ad Concepting Session 2/14: Forming a Mental Picture
 Summary of Artist-Writer Brainstorming

CHAPTER 3: Ping-Pong, Part II: Development, Elaboration, and Evaluation of Concepts by an “Insight-Intensive” Team
 Neil’s Composing Lines 2/14
 February 15 Evaluation of Lines Meeting: Customer Supplants Client
 Merging Pictures and Words: 2/16-2/22
 Evolution of a Good Idea: The “Lawns are Our Life” Campaign
 Tip-Ball Evaluative Meeting 2/22/02: “I’m Sure We’ll See a Lawnmower in Here Real Soon”
Second Tip-Ball Meeting 2/27/02: “Romance the Product”
3/6 Tip-Ball Meeting: The End of the Lines and a New Assignment
 Case Conclusion

CHAPTER 4: “We Had One Idea That We Liked a Lot”: The Invention of a Preparation- and Evaluation-Intensive Team
 The Copywriter
 The Artist
 Overview of Composing Processes
 Preparation and Preliminary Ideas
 Brainstorming Session

CHAPTER 5: Less Divergence than Convergence: Analysis of a Preparation- and Evaluation-Intensive Team’s Invention and the End of the Hunt
 Summary of Artist-Writer Brainstorming
 Concept Development and Tip-Ball, 2/15-22
 2/22-27 Tightening Up
 Verbal-Visual Cognition: Assimilation and Accommodation in the Dyadic Mind

CHAPTER 6: Collaboration Envisioned
 Initial Verbal-Visual Invention Predominantly Concerned with Visual
 Rhetorical Elements in Verbal-Visual Composing
 Comparison of Sequences of Invention of Artist-Writer Teams
 Comparison of Collaboration Styles: Assertive vs. Supportive
 Dyadic Self-Evaluation
 The Pause That Refreshes and Other Varieties: Comparison of Pauses in Dyadic Composing Processes
 Dyad’s Conflict Management beyond Dismissal Pauses
 Efficient Principles of Concept Invention: Verbal-Visual Topoi
 Audience Analysis by Dyads, Artists, and Writers
 Mindfulness in the Collaborative Efforts
 Dyadic vs. Large-Group Productivity
 Contribution of the Study to Existing Models of Verbal-Visual Collaboration
 The Roles of Concepts and Layout in Group Assimilation and Accommodation
 Questions for Further Research
 Recommendations for the Practice, Training, and Teaching of Verbal-Visual Collaboration

 Appendix: Methods
 Data Gathering
 Data Analysis
 Mode of Representation
 Locating the Ethnographer
 Works Cited

 Author-Subject Index

 List of Figures

 List of Tables

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