MacDonald, Juliet (2012) Digits and Figures: a manual drawing practice and its modes of reproduction. In: SAGE Handbook of Digital Dissertations and Theses. SAGE Publications Ltd. ISBN 9780857027399

In this chapter I describe the digital outcomes of my PhD research into drawing. The thesis addresses drawing as a form of enquiry, the primary method and object of research being my own observational drawing practice. The digital format of the thesis supports the display of scans and moving image content, and texts are connected in a non-linear structure. I discus this format and contextualize the project in relation to recent drawing research and the use of the internet as a forum for dissemination.

This chapter highlights those aspects of drawing practice that are made accessible to researchers and examiners by digital formats and those that are rendered more obscure. I consider three aspects: drawing as process; drawing as the artifact of process; and drawing as configuration or figure. I then describe the material reproduction of the figure in the analogue/digital process of scanning, and the subsequent manifestation of the drawing as an image on screen.

The creative desire for a complete integration of text and image is set against the objectives of accessibility. Finally, I consider the longevity of the digital thesis as internet platforms evolve and universities and libraries attempt to establish consistent and lasting modes of storage.

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