When Mike Rohde came to Ann Arbor a couple weeks ago to teach sketchnote workshops, he graciously offered to meet up and chat with people in our design community.
Local designers, an engineer, user experience folks, and a librarian joined us for a great evening at The Songbird Cafe. We chatted about design, books, our favorite pens, and sketchnoting.
— Nicole (Rhoads) Smith (@nniiccoollee) March 12, 2015
And thanks to Mike and Nikki McDonald, senior acquisitions editor at Peachpit Press and New Riders, people who attended the meetup received free sketchnoting books and great-looking sketchnote stickers. How lovely!
The staff at The Songbird Cafe loved the sketchnoted coffee cup Mike left behind.
The following day I joined Mike at his afternoon workshop for Ross School of Business students at the University of Michigan. What fun!
While Mike explained the basic concepts of sketchnoting, I sketchnoted his talk.
Note: I’m a beginner at sketchnoting (I usually live tweet events and conferences). Be gentle with your remarks on my work. Check out the key takeaways from the sketchnotes.
What are sketchnotes?
- Notes +
- Writing +
- Letting +
Steal concepts from PowerPoint slides.
When you sketchnote
- Keep it simple
- Capture important concepts
- Consider layout beforehand
- Focus on ideas, not art
- Point out ideas
- Focus attention
- Connect ideas
Use five basic shapes to create objects
Create an icon library you can use throughout your sketchnotes. Create images for ideas/concepts you repeat: help, alert, clock (time), love, pencil, etc.
Add imagery as you take notes. Observe, listen, and have fun!
Treehouses, Lemonade Stands, and Fun at the Sketchnote Workshop
Throughout the workshop, Mike gave us mini-assignments to sketchnote. We had a lot of fun learning how to draw faces, people, and other objects from the five elements.
We also createed sketchnotes of our ideal treehouse, the perfect lemonade stand, and business icon concepts. I was impressed with the treehouses students created, with slides, waterfalls, and one even had a pulley.
Students shared their work, presented their sketch, and explained their thought process.
Give Sketchnoting a Try
If you haven’t tried sketchnoting, give it a whirl!
It was great to see Mike again. I had a wonderful time at the meetup and workshop! And I hope we’ll see Mike return to Ann Arbor soon.