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Imitation is a Form of Flattery and Learning: how the method of imitation can produce new designs in stained glass windows

Year: 2023

Presenter Name: Rebekah Phillips

Imitation is a form a flattery...and learning: How the method of imitation can produce new designs in stained glass window' There is a misconception that imitation and copy are one and the same. An ongoing debate in the realm of art and architecture is that to imitate one work is equal to creating an exact replica. However, imitation is a crucial method in learning to create and develop originality. To elaborate, imitation is using influences to shape one's work into something new and different by studying past models, models meaning art, buildings, or other creative works. A copy, however, is creating a model to be identical to the model studied. But this does not mean copying is bad. Copying is the first step to this learning process. "First, do as I do to then reach an understanding to possess as your own creative process." The purpose of this project is to show how studying past models can create a new design. The process for this creative project is to draw replicas or copies of window designs, then with each drawing, create a new stained glass window design by taking the best parts of each drawing and combining it into one design.
This method of imitation applies to many other scenarios, not just the drawing aspect. In architecture school, the study of precedents is highly encouraged. Like in this window design experiment, students analyze building facades, floor plans sections and elevations and study proportions and geometry to use in their final designs. Window details and motif designs can be applied as a floor plan shape or garden design. Imitation of nature is often used as well to create furniture designs, patterns for fabric or wallpaper. Imitation is an important process that involves the study of past designs to aid one in developing the creative skills to produce a new model or design. Copying is a part of this process and is the first step to learning new creative skills. One important aspect of imitation is to study many precedents to build a list of references to draw from and generate ideas in the numerous creative work fields.
University / Institution: Utah Valley University
Type: Poster
Format: In Person
Presentation #A18
SESSION A (9:00-10:30AM)
Area of Research: Architecture
Faculty Mentor: Brandon Ro