Hello and welcome to the introduction to sketchnoting course. Where we will cover the basics of visual note taking. My name is Elvia Vasconcelos and I will be introducing you to the practice of sketchnoting. Before we begin, I'm going to ask you to grab plenty of paper, pen and or pencils whichever you prefer, so you can start taking notes straightaway. So the way that the session will work is that you will see me sketching this presentation on screen. But, what I really want you to concentrate on is on my voice and taking notes. So use the screen as a point of reference, but as much as possible, just follow my voice, take notes of whatever catches your ear and try and relax into it. So now you should have paper and pen ready, so you can start taking notes alongside me. And for now there are no rules, just take these notes as you would normally. So I'll start by showing you the pens and papers that I normally use. Today I'm using A4 white paper because of this recording and I'm using black markers, one thick, one thin and perhaps a highlighter. And this is a good strategy to create something really, really simple because you'll be able to create a hierarchy. So with a thick pen, you will do things that are more important perhaps titles, with a thinner pen, you can do some details, and then the highlighter you can use afterwards to kind of draw attention to things that are important. I have also been using a bunch of other kind of materials like pencils and in there, I've kind of used a bit more of colors. But it's a good idea to start simple and not to add a lot of colors to the mix because that can get quite noisy visually. So keep it simple and define these things as you start. Depending on what kind of size you're comfortable with in drawing, you can use a notebook, A5 something bigger. Just whatever makes you feel comfortable, always go for plain paper that's just easier to make things work for you. I have also been using these accordion sketchbooks that I really, really like because you can see a kind of a timeline emerge. So I recommend if you ever kind of want to venture out to go and get one. So today, we'll start with a gentle warm up, we'll then move on to the main part of this course. We'll look at a basic definition for sketchnotes and some main references to get you introduced to the sketchnoting community. I'll also share some of my work to give you a bit of context as to why I use sketchnoting and how I got started using them. We'll then look into some of the components of a sketchnote. This will go through a basic anatomy, the main element and it will end with a visual library that you can use to continue practicing after today. At the end I'll invite you to close this session by thinking about what you can do next to continue sketchnoting. So let's go with the warm up. Grab another piece of paper so that you have space, and then we'll start. So I usually, I put the title at the top, but you don't have to worry about that now and you can leave an empty space at the top and you can do it later. You can even make an empty box with a pencil and write your name and today's date. On one side you will write what I would like to have by the end of the session and then write three things. So three things that you would like to have by the end of the session. Then on the other side we'll do a squiggly bird. So if you look at the screen now, you will see me holding up a book called Hirameki by Penghu. And they have these beautiful squiggles with drawings and this is a warm up exercise and it's really fun. So let's try and get some fun going. But it's mostly about doing some squiggles and then adding eyes, and ears, and beaks, and legs, and wings, and nose to the things and seeing what comes out. So grab your color and do some squiggles and see what comes out. At the same time that I'm doing the squiggles and the birds, I am thinking about the initial question, what is it that I would like to have by the end of today? And I'm thinking that at a bare minimum by the end of today we will have some sketches to go back to that show what we did today. We will have a visual library or we will start some sort of visual library that will allow us to continue practicing. And we will leave with an understanding of the basics of sketch noting and ideally what I want you to live with is an understanding or thinking about how sketch noting can be of use to yourself in your work. And as I'm talking through this, you'll be able to see how I am composing these notes and how I'm boxing things and adding hours to things, which is something you know, that I've kind of trained myself to do. But for now you don't have to worry so much about doing it. But this is something that you can also do in the end and don't be scared to leave empty spaces for things. But you know, when you feel comfortable, you can start closing things and connecting things because that will give some meaning to your drawing. So now we have warmed up and let's get to the basics. So now we'll move on to the main part of this course and let's move on to a new page and create a frame for our sketch notes. So I'll start with a title and for that I'll be using a thick pen and I will put this at the top and the title for this session is introduction to sketch noting. So I'll put that at the top. There's a subtitle for this course so I can put that underneath and I'll be using the thin pen and the subtitle is the basics of visual note taking, I'll repeat. That's the basics of visual note taking. Put it underneath. I usually add supporting information because it helps me in remembering when things were done. So I normally, I'll add a date in one corner. I'll probably add any social media details that are needed. So if this was hosted somewhere wherever the person is from. So I am on at sketch notes are awesome on instagram, which is not a great name I know. But that's, you know, my social media, I'm on twitter at mask, but you can add any information that is needed then on one side of the page and this is now the main content, we will put The agenda, so the agenda is two things for today. So first we've done the warm up, second, we will cover the elements of sketch notes and third we will set an intention to continue sketchnoting. So we'll put that on one side, warm up elements intention, and then I'll also add some simple drawings to it. So for example with the warm up I added the squiggly birds with the elements, I added something that points at the anatomy of the sketch note. With the intention I put a star because that means my vision, this is something that I want to continue. Okay, so now I'll move to a brief introduction of sketchnoting on a new page. To make things faster you can leave the bit at the top for the title blank and fill it in the end. I have written the title at the top this case I made it smaller with no subtitle and I've also added a number to this page. So I will put that this is number three or four out of blank, so that I can find my way around these catches in the end. I have put in a placeholder date in the corner as well. So before we go into the definition of what sketchnoting is, it's worth setting it in the context of visual thinking. Visual thinking is about using images for reasoning, logic, thought and communication. More of our brain is dedicated to vision than any other thing that we do. So it makes sense to use our cognitive power through visual processing. So, I play sketch noting under the umbrella of visual note taking. Sketchnoting is a form of note taking that combines simple drawings with notes. They are sometimes done in real time to summarize a talk, a workshop meeting or some sort of collective experience. Sketchnoting is also sometimes referred to as graphic recording and graphic facilitation. And these are variations or specifically the graphic facilitation is a variation where the person doing the sketchnoting is also facilitating the activity simultaneously. And through the sketchnoting, there's kind of work being done live, so it's a little bit more complicated but it is also great fun. So, sketch notes are visual summaries created in real time. Their main contribution is that they produce a visual synthesis of what is being discussed. It is not so much about creating beautiful pictures, it is more about being able to articulate and convey the relevant bits of information that allow for people to understand and contribute to a discussion. As a sketch notre you are working on the ability to listen, see process and communicate at the same time. This is something that comes with practice and it took me years and years to feel comfortable doing it live in front of people. So now I'm showing you three examples of sketch nutters that I follow, the first one is evil at the lamb. They are a designer based in Germany whose work is not only beautiful, but incredibly clever, it's very systematic. Her newsletter is also on point, so I recommend you follow that, so I recommend you follow that too. The second reference that I want to share with you is a book called the back of the napkin by American author Dan Rome. And this book is great because it gets rid of the idea that you have to be able to draw to communicate visually. So I really recommend it even though I have been trying not to buy books written by white men, so I apologize for that. The final reference is scribe area, a company based in the UK. And this is an example at the extreme end of like how you can take sketchnoting and graphic recording in this case as a full on professional service, but things that they do are amazing, so I recommend that. I thought I would end this context setting by sharing a little bit about the value of sketchnoting and the reasons why I see them as a relevant thing to pursue both on a personal level. And how that can be used in the context of a working practice. So, I'll start with why this is important for me and we'll follow with showing you a few examples of when I've used this at work. So I was introduced to sketchnoting through the user experience community in London around 2011 when I was attending all the UX-related post work and UX is stands for user experience. And this was when I was attending all the U X related post work events I could find as I was training myself up to enter that profession. And in that process I said yes to sketchnoting the monthly events organized by a volunteer run association called the user experience professional association, UK short, U X P A, and I maintain this role for eight years. So by sketchnoting their events, I created this kind of personal development feedback loop. Where I was able to learn by getting a deeper understanding of the conversation that was happening in the design community at that time. I was also able to have a voice or at least I had to have a point of view because I had to draw it even when I wasn't very confident with having a say publicly. And in those years I also sketch noted tons of other events and soon I started doing this professionally, although always as a side to my day to the job. And mostly always as a way to collaborate with the people whose work I felt a line to. And my highlights so far have been collaborating with Virginia Eubanks, who is the author of the book, automating inequality and being tweeted by my all time favorite rockstar roshan Murphy from a local and I met them because of that. So I'll show you a few examples of some of the work that I've done the first one is the first sketch note that I did for UXPA and this took me ages. I didn't do it live at all, spent so much time doing it with such a perfectionist and of course then yeah I never did it like that again. Then the second example was probably the first live sketch note that I did that I really enjoyed, I was so happy the way that it came out. Then this other example is a set of three images from Hackathon that I participated in. This was a two day thing I was working with people I didn't know and I was comfortable with getting there and drawing and my contribution to that group was very much by Working through with the group thinking drawing, doing it live and we use this to present our process and we pitched and we won. That was quite nice. And then the final example is of when I did this on a wall. So when I started becoming confident, I started doing this live in meetings at my work. And then soon enough I was doing this on big walls with workshops with a lot of people. And this is an example of how far you can take it, but it takes a lot of practice and you have to have a wall and you have to have the right pet. So these are just a few examples of what I've done with sketch noting. So now let's go into the practical side of things by looking at the components of a sketch note. So will do, we'll do this in three bits. So first we'll start with the basic anatomy for sketch notes. Will then explore a few elements that can be used and will end with the visual library, the anatomy. Let's start by creating a basic anatomy for a sketch notes. My first tip is to always write in capital letters. Now you probably haven't been doing that so far, which is a good thing because you will then be able to compare your sketches from this point onwards. So kind of before and after. So the first thing that I put on the page is the title and I make this really, really big and it goes at the top, I usually draw a box around it to give it even more weight. And then I draw a very basic version of a person as a speaker and I add their name and any information such as their work, like a book or a social media, handle something that references them. And something that people might want to use to find them online. And I usually put the person in one of the kind of extremities, one of the sides. At the center of the page, I usually put the main idea or the message that I got from the person speaking and I would be curious to hear what is the main message that you get out of today. But in general for all of these talks, podcasts, there's a main idea and this main idea is usually supported by one or two messages that I normally placed on the side. They might be shorter and snap your takeaways and then I link to them. So this is a basic structure that you can use and apply in other contexts like a meeting or a workshop. Because the structure is focused on a key idea, supporting messages and key takeaways. The story that you are telling is a synthesis of what happened and what your specific reading of it was. What are you left with what was discussed? Anything that caught your attention and this forces you to reduce information which is problematic. But you will really have to summarize what is it that you take from something that you attended. And if there is any action points coming out of that from you. So the second part is the elements bit. So moving on to the second part which is the elements of a sketch notes that you can use. The first elements that is extremely important are letters and funds. My main point of reference here is the world of comics because they provide great examples of how to convey feelings through words. As an example, if you use a wavy line to write the word fear, you might give a sense of trepidation. If you write flashy and big bulky letters and then surrounded by marx you are hinting the meaning in more than one way. Using movement is also good. So you can write epic in different sizes and it makes it feel more dynamic. And onoto phase pays are also really good. So paoh indicates that something is punchy and that just happened. So it's good to play around. It's a good excuse to look at some your favorite comics. So do that. I also use icons quite a lot. So creating your own bullet points is a really good idea for creating your own visual language that allows you to work faster. So I use the light bulb for idea. The star for gold. The target is also easy and conveys a different kind of more to the point. I used the pointy speech bubble to surround something that is problematic and this might be something that is triggering or that I don't agree with. I use the triangle and an exclamation as an alert and I've been using an A with a circle around it as an indicator for something that I want to action. The other elements apart from letters that I want to share with you today are containers, speech bubbles, dividers and connectors and finally layout patterns. So moving on to the second group of elements, let's start with containers. So using a line to draw shape around the group of words and drawings makes it easier for your eyes to navigate a sketch. Because we are indicating the way something is structure and we're also giving the eye some strong points to navigate with. So it's almost like providing heathers so that your eye can very quickly scan what is being shown and make sense of it and then decide where to start going in a more detailed exploration. A container is essentially a box that can be made more elaborate by giving it pointy ends by making it wavy. You can also turn it into a ribbon. It can be a flag, it can be a banner. It can be all sorts of things. It's you, can experiment with it but the basic box. Then speech bubbles are a good way to indicate when you are quoting someone. You can also use the quotation marks and you can use or you can create a visual language by using rounded speech bubbles for one person and square ones for another person or for a different type of content. You can add lots of different speech bubbles altogether and this indicates that there was a lot of conversation. You can add arrows back and forth again to indicate that there was an exchange. Going back to the language of comics you can also use a cloud bubble to indicate a thought that wasn't smoking. So something that you're thinking and you can also indicate a punchy statement through a steamy cloud. You can use lines and patterns to organize space frames, create road signs etc. So all of this is about indicating the borders of things so that your eye can very quickly scan the page. The other very important elements are arrows. This is something that I use a lot and you can establish a hierarchy by using a single line as a baseline. For things that are more important, you can use a bolder, bigger arrow. You can use movement. So that a round continuous arrow can indicated iterations, it can indicate a process that has several steps. You can also use quantity. So if you surround a word with lots and lots of arrows, you're saying look at this, this is important and this is something that you can of course do after you have sketched. You can go back to the sketch and you can highlight and you can add elements so that you kind of you say these were the bits that were most important. But arrows are a very important element because they connect things but they can also indicate to the viewer a way to navigate your sketch. So you can even use arrows to say start here, then go there or this bit is connected to that one and then connected to that one. So you can do many different things. The final element I want to share with you are six layout patterns which are ways of structuring your content on a page. One of the main things that people often ask me is how do you know what goes where when you have started? How do you know how to play around with the space of the page that you have available? And these patterns kind of will help you in figuring that out. But a lot of it is just it comes with practice and just following whatever grabs your attention. You place it and then suddenly things will start coming and they're related to each other and it emerges. But let's go through these structured layer patterns. So the first pattern is the path and this is where you lay your content in a semi-linear way and in the end, you connect each block and you might add some numbers to indicate the sequence. So this is fairly straightforward and it's very useful. It's one of those that I use a lot and it's particularly helpful to indicate how something was unpacked. Then the second pattern is the molecular one and this is particularly useful when there is no sequence but things are associated to each other by type for example. And so you just create these molecular structures and you connect them and the size of the clusters might indicate importance in essence like how much a topic was discussed. The third pattern is the grid. This is something that I don't use that much because it requires quite a lot of forward planning that I don't usually do, but I wanted to share this with you in case this was of use to you. But this is good to indicate a sequence of things like a comic strip, so a very linear story, it's good to use a grid. Then the fourth one is a column which is particularly useful when you have for example three ideas with the same weight. So this allows you to describe the space evenly and this works. For example, if you are hearing a podcast or seeing someone present and they say there's three things and you can put like one header for each of them and then try and fill the space underneath. So that's a good one. The fifth one is the centric where you place something in the middle and everything else is placed around that one thing. Now I've tried this pattern many times but in the end, I always find it awkward to make it work with because it leaves tiny little corners and it I find it difficult. But I've tried many times and even doing like an infinite infinite eight but give it a try. And then the final layout is the popcorn which is my favorite because it's many things, but it's chaos. Essentially you just document what comes out and in the end, you try and make some sense of it but you don't worry about where things go. Now these layout patterns are not exclusive and I usually combine them. So these are just ideas to get you started, so feel free to mix and match. So now we'll move on to the final group of elements that I wanted to share with you today and that is the visual library. So the main idea that I want to leave you with today is that you don't have to be able to draw to sketch note. You can create your own visual language by combining the basic geometric elements of a circle, a square, a triangle, a line and a dot. And the idea is that you start your own visual library and you continue adding to it so you have these elements ready in your head when you are sketching. So in a way, you're creating your own visual language. So I suggest that you start by joining the basics of everyday life. So like a house, a bicycle, a car, a pencil, pen, marker, a pile of paper, book, a screen, newspaper, phone, tablet, laptop, banana, glass of water. There's so many things and you can do this in many different ways. You can choose okay, today I'm just going to do kitchen stuff or I'm going to do work stuff but it's there's a lot of things that can be done by using these really basic drawings. And if you take one thing from today is to get a sketchbook and to everyday add one element to your visual library. Just one element, whatever that is. So create your visual library because it will help you in the long run. To draw people, I use star people because I find them very easy and malleable and fun. And also drawing people is difficult and I mean I try but that's a different ball game. So if you want, the best way is to just go with caricature and just go full caricature and just release yourself from doing anything that resembles people in real life. And just use star people, basic round head, shoulders, that's it. Okay, so to close our session, I would like to invite you to set an intention to continue sketch noting. You can do this by folding your sheet of paper in half, then half again in one direction than half horizontally so you end up with a grid of eight. In each of these eight spaces, you can write different things. To get you started you can write in, what ways can sketch-noting support me in dot dot dot, think of the situations where sketch-noting can be of use to you. In my case, I wrote that the situations where sketch-noting can support me are, in learning, because I am taking a few course, I'm always taking a few courses, in reading, because I have a lot of stuff to process from the things that I read and I need to be able to make connections between the things that I'm reading, in writing, because I find that if I can sketch something out and if I can draw it, I can kind of map the storylines of the things that I'm trying to write. So, with writing, sketching helps me immensely. I also put that sketch-noting can help me in documenting my work, and communicating my work and especially showing working progress, or using it to ask people for input on specific things that are still kind of being cooked. So, I invite you to think of situations where articulating things with pen and paper might open up for different kinds of conversation even with yourself. And so after you have unpacked this, so the ways in which sketch-noting can be of help to you, you can then think about or you can then turn these into actionable steps. So, what I did here was I took the top half of the page and in the bottom half you can write what I would like to have by the end of this dot dot dot ,and you can add whichever time frame suits you. So, this could be two weeks, a month etc, but it could be by the end of this week I would like to, dot dot dot. So let's say that by the end of this week, I would like to have created a visual library with five elements one for each day of the week, not counting the weekends. Okay. And so, this eight-grid sheet of paper is quite nice because if you make a cut in the middle, then you can fold this and then it becomes this little booklet. And you can give it a title at the beginning, or we can use the title that we already have. But this could be something that you commit to do. So out of today, you have a bunch of sketches ,hopefully, and I would like you to leave with setting an intention. So, how is it that you are going to use sketch-noting to support you in doing whatever it is that you're doing this week? So, think about it and continue sketching. So today I've shared with you a little bit about how I understand sketch-noting, how sketch-noting has been useful for me in my career and in my work and my personal life as well, and I hope that you will have taken something useful out of today. Thank you very much.