What is Design Studio?
Design studio is a methodology to bring people together to try and solve difficult problems through sketching. Design studio is a series of exercises where people sketch quickly to try and come up with innovative solutions to problems.
Why do we do Design Studio?
We run design studio so that we can collaboratively brainstorm solutions to challenging problems. It brings together people from different expertises and backgrounds (not just UX designers) to try and solve things. This collaborative brainstorming approach has been a great way test solutions that we might not have come up with if we were designing on an island.
How do we do Design Studio
We typically try to run longer design studios so that we can brainstorm multiple facets of a problem. The methods are fairly straightforward. We start by framing the persona and problem we have and are trying to solve.
We individually sketch quickly using sharpies (time-boxed 30 seconds to 5 minutes per sketch). We find sharpies to be best since it removes the ability to be detailed or correct your mistakes. It also levels the playing field amongst designers, developers and business people. We then do a combination of silent heat map voting (putting stickers on ideas we like best) and a brief open critique. We then take a break, rinse & repeat.