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Working creatively as a researcher should be a core foundation in doctoral studies, though it may be an isolating, even risky, endeavour. The purpose of this paper is to share the author’s journey through the “darkness” of innovation in research methodology.Design/methodology/approachAt the heart of this research journey was Portraiture (Lawrence-Lightfoot, 1983), which emerged early in the post-modern evolution of qualitative research. While exploring Portraiture, the author found researchers used this methodology in varying ways: application, appropriation and interpretation. In stumbling through Portraiture, the author discovered patchwork as their bricoleur’s toolbag. Patchwork provided a torch that gave light to the darkness of the research process enabling interpretation of Portraiture for alignment of method and research problematic.FindingsLooking back at the research journey, the author recognises the steps into post-qualitative research and the need for methodological innovators to share their journeys for inspiration, to develop understanding and open the way to greater creativity and innovation during the research process.Originality/valueThis paper provides an original view to Portraiture along with the addition of patchwork as a way of engaging with methodology as well as data.
Qualitative Research Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 18, 2019
Keywords: Portraiture; Patchwork; Post-qualitative research; Innovative research; Post-coding analysis; Early career research
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