Vignethnographies: A Method for Fast, Focused and Visual Exploration

  • Edgar Gómez CruzEmail author
  • Jessica Noske-Turner
  • Jolynna Sinanan


In this chapter, we present an exploration of a digital visual method we have called “vignethnography”, which combines “vignette” and “ethnography” to produce a brief but detailed visual story that provides insights into the everyday lives of participants by focussing on a single aspect. By collaboratively generating research knowledge, vignethnography effectively draws on the contemporary digital moment, where due to the ease of producing and circulating images afforded by smartphones, populations of all ages increasingly share routines and events with relatives and friends, visually. We argue that vignethnography is effective for researching with older adults because of its capacity to gauge insights into their digital practices as well as narratives of place. We position vignethnography as an emergent methodology that contributes to experimentation and innovative methods in the social sciences and research in visual techniques afforded by digital devices.


Video methods Ethnography Methodological innovation Participants engagement 



The authors wish to acknowledge RMIT University’s Enabling Capabilities Platforms (ECP) initiatives for funding Digital Footscray.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edgar Gómez Cruz
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jessica Noske-Turner
    • 2
  • Jolynna Sinanan
    • 3
  1. 1.University of New South WalesSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.University of LeicesterLeicesterUK
  3. 3.University of SydneySydneyAustralia

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