I have been teaching qualitative methods for a decade, on-and-off, but have yet to really write about methods in a substantive fashion myself. Until now! I finally got around to writing a paper about my attempts to experiment with a new method of transcript analysis which I call “painting with data”. You can download the paper here, if you want to read it: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0038026121991787

It was a really fun project. I developed the technique as part of a Simon Fellowship I was awarded at the University of Manchester, which aimed to explore how everyday life changed in the context of dementia care. The paper explains how I used the method to engage people caring for someone living with dementia in a creative discussion about their experiences but also as a form of analysis of the interviews I had done with them and others. They made amazing images through use of paint, pens and paper. And I was often really moved by the process.

You can see an example below, taken from the paper, which shows how participants painted on data transcripts adding new layers of meaning. I use these pages of painted data to advance a broader argument about the aesthetics of qualitative data analysis.

Mark’s brainbow.



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