Reply To: Comics and Sketchnoting

January 4, 2016 at 4:40 pm #4491
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Hello Alice
This is Jill – and it’s great to see you joined us here – I recently joined the group after coming across some of Doug’s videos on YouTube. I was doing some research after coming across this idea of visualizing note-taking in a presentation on I liked what I saw in Doug’s video presentations – his clean organization is a style I can relate to – and so here I am 🙂

This new (to me) Note Taking method really caught my attention when I saw the first presentation, because way back in the 60s – the “Chalk Talks” and “Lightening “Sketches” were quite a popular way of presenting Bible Stories in Sunday Schools and Vacation Bible Schools (at least in New Zealand and in Australia). Then later in the very early 90s I came across Tony Buzan – (known as the founder of the mindmapping technique) – and adapted some mind mapping techniques for quite a while.

I am a bit of a cartoonist myself – and have studied a little cartooning in books that were available back in the 60s (from the Disney Studios and the Flintstones).

Basically as I see the Sketchnoting technique in comparison with the Comics, the difference is:

Comics follow a StoryBoard. So the the cartoon characters, their interaction with each other and the cartooned exclamations etc that depict emotions are arranged in story line fashion – following an actual sequence of events. The goal of a cartoon series is to tell a story.

Sketchnoting protrays a series of big ideas (or main ideas) that are a part of a teaching presentation (or even a mastermind session). The goal of Sketchnoting is to visualize a teaching presentation with icons or simplified drawings. Because we remember what we see more than what we hear, this enables the student to recall the main ideas with a far greater ease than if she had only seen a set of bullet points. So – the Sketchnoting craft does not place the emphasis on the artwork – the idea is to communicate the teaching to the visual part of our brains.

The sequence of Sketchnotetaking can be linear – or more in the form of mind mapping (with the big idea in the center of the page, and branches going out from that, or a series of ideas in following an “S” shape etc). It all depends on the style of the SketchNote Taker and on the information that needs to be remembered. There is no right or wrong style – as long as you achieve the goal of helping the student recall the information.

I recently have read Brandy Agerbeck’s book “The Graphic Facitiator’s Guide” – She describes the GF to be the NoteTaker who exercises her skills in a public for a client – (in a conference setting etc). The SketchNote Taker is the one who typically exercises his skills for his own project. Brandy’s main idea in her book is that the Graphic Facilitator’s job is to Listen –> Think (how to organize what he hears) –> Draw Organized Information.

Another book which will give you a great background to this craft of Visualnotetaking is Sunni Brown’s book “The Doodle Revolution” (I am presently going through this one – highly recommend and Sunni is one of the authors who inspired Doug to do what he is doing).

Also I found to be VERY worth while reading: Patti Dobrowolski’s book “Drawing Solutions – How Visual Goal Setting will Change Your Life”

Finally I got hold of Bobbi DePorter’s book Quantum Learning – Unleashing the Creative Genius in You (seems to be out of print – I found a used copy on Amazon) – VERY well worth finding a copy.

Well Alice – I hope this is some help for you. All the very best.