Cross-cultural Directional Trends in Drawing

Karen Kuo
MArch I 2023
Ethica Burt
MDes Ecologies 2023
Monica Chelliah
MArch I 2026
1 Dashboard for visualizing correlation between drawings across countries.

A thought, a line, a direction. A drawing is made up of numerous lines with a goal in mind. The concept of drawing has become an international socio-cultural practice that fills space with visual meaning. With the proliferation of drawing datasets, there begins a connection between how an object is perceived and how it is drawn. How does one draw? There may be a connection between different cultures and countries who engage with different approaches towards writing style, tradition, and art.

The Google ‘Quick, Draw!’ dataset consists of almost a billion of these doodles of different objects ranging from simple circles to more complex objects like bees. This data is categorized by country, with each stroke stored as part of a point cloud and recognized as a specific type of drawing by an artificial intelligence process. By parsing this data by country and by stroke and re-visualizing these doodles, a clear correlation emerges which gives each country its own drawing thumbprint. Explore these visualizations and differences through this cross-cultural developmental study of directional asymmetries in these vast datasets. What correlations do you see?

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Project video
2 Stroke trends between drawings across countries.
3 Dashboard parameters with data collected.
4 Averaged drawing of a circle across one country.
5 A grid of drawing averages across the dataset.