Today more than ever, we are tied to our computers for the better part of the work day, which involves a lot of sitting, typing and thinking in a linear linguistic manner (see multiple intelligence theory). This is good if linguistic is your primary way of processing, but for so many people it is not.
Have you ever found that your best ideas come when you're doing something really mundane, like taking a shower, driving, or just going for a walk? That's because you're giving your brain space to process whatever it is you're thinking about. As along as you actively think about the situation you are not giving your best ideas room to emerge. It may seem like a paradox, but sometimes the best way to find a solution is to step away from the problem. Are you wondering what you can do to speed up that process and become more creative and better at idea generating and creative problem solving? As a creative and designer it is my job to constantly come up with ideas, here are some things that work for me:
In November of 2011, I was the designated “graphic recorder for the “Systems Thinking in
Action Conference, an annual event that was held this year in Seattle Washington.
I received a lot of excited response to my work, with a great many people described it as if
I'd performed some kind of “magic”. It was a great experience since this was probably the
FIRST time I'd plied my craft outside the walls of the Big Airplane Company where I've been
employed for the last 22 years. At this conference, I was able to “play with the big boys” so
to speak, and I received confirmation that I was able to hold my own – outside my normal
domain, rather easily (it's nice to know).
As a graphic recorder, I use images alongside words to capture what people are talking about in the moment. Conversations I record are usually rich and dynamic, there is no time for thinking up images, they have to already be in my head and take very little time to create.
A library of images is essential for my work and constantly practicing and expanding it is crucial but sometimes a boring task. It is much easier and more fun to do it with others.
Today I went to a Lunch and Learn meeting at a local coworking place, AuBC. Paul Zohav talked to us about relationship literacy and, of course, I took visual notes. Usually I go back and add color, but this time felt like leaving it black and white.
Would love to hear some feedback - does color make it easier to see what is connected to what? Should I do more of black and white? What do you think? more
I am not talking about just hiring a graphic recorder to take notes while you do your regular routine, what I mean is really working together to create a great presentation for your audience. Do you prepare slides to go with what you are telling? Do they add to your talk? Well, this is going to bring it to a whole another level.
Startup Washington had their Next 50 launch party at Seattle Center last night and I, together with two other fellow graphic recorders Anne Jesse and Anne Mann, got a chance to participate and introduce interactive visuals to local entrepreneurs.
My job was to get people talking about failure. What could become a difficult topic for a light networking event turned out to be a fun and thought provoking experience! We started with people coming up to me one by one and sharing their stories of missteps and the lessons they'd learned and I wrote them down with words and sometimes icons.
Print a small copy and hand it out at the next meeting, so that everyone has something to refer to and make marks on. The best format for the chart originally sized 4x8 feet is tabloid 11x17 inches, it is very readable and, when folded in half, it is exactly the same as standard letter size, so it will fit nicely into a file folder.
This is my first attempt of a video like this, it begins a series on change management methodologies. Filmed in a tiny studio, without a crew and with just an iphone and a couple of borrowed lights, it turned out to be a pretty doable fun project.