You Are Here

I love the malls. My biggest enjoyment in these massive places is people watching. You can learn so much about how we humans interact and react. Also, there is great inspiration in these shopping meccas. One inspiration I use came from a sign that almost all shoppers have see, read and referred. It’s a sign predominately display for all to see.. I am referring to the mall map. The sign that plots out all the shops by place and group of services or goods.

The mall map tells us so much about our environment. However, this sign in its entirety was not the source of my inspiration, rather the simple red dot icon and three words accompanying it. “You Are Here.” As a statement to anyone planning strategy, this hits home quickly and strongly. In order to plan, we need to know where we are on this very spot and in this current time. We need to know where “You Are Here” is.

Here is a visual exercise that I challenge anyone who is planning to move forward to answer ‘Who’ and ‘What’ holds you bank and drives you forward.

Hold Back Move Forward

 

Before you can move forward you need to know your “You Are Here.”

 

Difficulties of Challenges

Every challenge we face has some level of difficulty. Some are gradual and modestly challenging, while others take us to the brink of self-destruction. So ask yourself ‘how was my day, week or project?’ What did it look like? Now, here comes the tool of visual thinking. Rate them by using simple images like the ones below.  Record these little images on a calendar, small corner of the project notes or on anywhere that will help you to remember and possibly prepare for the next challenge.

The simple images below which reflect the levels of difficulties in challenges were inspired by a fellow sketchnotes enthusiast Patricia Kambitsch of Playthink and Redesign. Feel free to use them as needed. You may even want to print the image out and attach them to your project notes, then circle the related image.

Uphill BattleBy using such images as indicators, we are visually connecting the image to the event and later, using the image to trigger the memories of that challenge and similar challenges with the same level of difficulty. You train your brain to create unconscious connections between challenges. The connection also create warnings as well as possible solutions to be used in new challenges.

So, look back on your day, week or challenges and use the images to make mental filings for future use. Good luck and keep (th)INKing visually.

Words with Emotion

Sketchnote Lesson:

In sketchnotes, we share the idea of capturing emotion with smiley faces on stickmen and these are easy and classic, there is also a way to add emotion to words with a bit of forethought and practice. 

Let’s have a bit of visual fun and add stronger emphasis on those words we use.

SKNT lesson

A great source for lettering with emphasis are comic books, children picture books and graffiti. Learn from others who communicate with strong visuals to enhance your visual notes. So, just as you build up your visual library, try building your word emotion library as well. The more you add visual clues to your Sketchnotes and Graphicnotes, the greater the impact of the underlining information.

By the way, did you notice your eyes went right to the “POWER” word. Color also is a great add to emotion.

Remember, keep your ideas sketchy and visual, because the best ideas are ones seen by all.

Kevin.

Personal 2 Public

There has been much debate around sketchnoting, graphic recording and even the rise of  graphic note taking or “Graphicnoting.” Though, similar in nature of recording others through the use of text and graphics, each present some unique characteristics that can help define or clarify what they are.

Mike Rohde is by far the best person to explain what and how sketchnotes work as he is one of the primary founders of the concept and he defines sketchnoting as being a personal tool. While on the far end of the spectrum, graphic recording has a very strong public presence by taking a public conversation and recording it for all to see.

Personal 2 Public

Now enter “Graphicnoting.” Graphicnoting is something I am all too familiar with as this is my preferred method of visual recording. The process can be explained like this; recording graphically a public conversation at a semi-personal level, then sharing to the present and non-present public. Graphicnoting is performed on a smaller scale than that of traditional wall graphic recording, yet with very similar processes formats. Unlike large wall graphic recording, graphicnotes utilizes a more portable media like that of sketchnotes. I see Graphicnotes as bridging the gap between the personal tool and the public performance.

On a last note on production, once completing a graphicnote on paper, the inked pages are digitized, colorized and then publish as needed. There are other ways of creating these graphicnotes such as the use of tablets which allow the creation of digital originals. I don’t believe or see one method being better than another. Each method is based upon the preference of the recorder.

So if you want to shift from sketchnotes into graphic recording slowly or vise versa, my suggestion is try Graphicnotes where the practices and processes of both formats are used. Who knows, this may become your method of choice also.

Until next time, keep your ideas sketchy and your conclusions drawn.

Sighted Vision

“The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.” Helen Keller

Vision ComparedAs Helen Keller so eloquently stated, sight is not everything if one does not have vision. Vision is more than a dream to achieve something, vision is being able to see obstacles, goals and the right path to achieve your dream. Visual translation is that tool that can convert your dream into a tangible vision. By utilizing the talents of a visual translator or graphic facilitator, a person or group can develop visual strategies that help solidify the future and lay the path to success.

Creating a thINKing canvas, you are able to convert the intangible dream into a tangible vision plan and as I always say, ‘the best plan is one seen by all.’ Mere words or text cannot always articulate beyond the content of the communication. Graphic maps can help show links in conversation, uncover gaps in thinking and offer insights to other opportunities.

Using journey maps, mind mapping and graphic-notes, entrepreneurs, small businesses and organizations can create a tangible visual that everyone can see and understand. Graphic maps provide the articulation that words or text sometimes overlooks or understates and can put everyone on the same path with the same goals in mind. Once everyone has the same vision, than everyone can constructively work towards success. That’s having sight with vision.

thinkAbout 2013

Have you ever wanted to attend a conference where everyone is totally engaged in the content, speakers and activities, well if so, than you just missed the greatest conference of experiential development. A large group converged on to Washington D.C. for the annual event called thinkAbout. A conference unlike anything you have ever attended or experienced before. Two days of mind-filling information, exercises and adventures focused on helping business owners transform their businesses from service providers to experiences.

Created by the authors of “The Experience Economy; Work is Theater & Every Business a Stage”, B. Joseph Pine II & James H. Gilmore, thinkAbout is that and much more. Below are a few visual translations that are samples from the event. Too much to record in, so little time.

thinkAbout 2013 A webthinkAbout 2013 Cv2 webthinkAbout 2013 B web

Definitely a conference that follows what it preaches. You may have missed this year’s, but I recommend you definitely begin planning for next year’s thinkAbout and experience what a conference could be and should be, an EXPERIENCE!

If you’re interested in attending and have not attended an event before, alumni’s offer to share their chits to attend, because thinkAbout is a closed event and only available to those have the desire to transform their business.

Contact Joe Pine or Jim Gilmore at StrategicHorizons for information on next year’s gathering. Do it today, don’t wait, then read the book so you can jump right in on the activities, conversations and exercises around the concepts shared inside.

When you do call, tell them Kevin Dulle sent you.

P.S. For all attendees of thinkAbout, I have printed copies of high-resolution version available by request. You have my email and phone number so reach out if you like copies.