From the Top Drawer

Doodles and discussion on Graphic Recording

More than pretty pictures

By Katherine Woods

The wave of interest in visual working has crescendoed in the last ten years. I attribute this to many factors including: the increase in global working, in which pictures paint a thousand words; the use of iconography in the electronic devices we use every day; the popularity of books by David Sibbet and Dan Roan, who have made this way of working accessible to business people.

The downside I see in the appeal of visual working, is that visuals are often used without understanding the implications of the choices being made so. To the untrained eye, it’s all about pretty pictures.

There are three dimensions to working visually

  • The process by which the image is created
  • The underlying metaphor and architecture of the image
  • The way in which the image is used, once it is created

Within each of these dimensions there are multiple choices, which means there is a broad range of different results that can be achieved by combining them. In this article I hope to shine a light on the first dimension, by looking at the different ways graphic images are created and the impact this has.

I have summarised this into four discrete areas, yet the reality is that within each field there is a variety of application. For example within graphic recording: some recorders work privately, on sketchbooks; some work publically on large charts; some work completely real time; some do the outline real time and complete in the studio; some work in colour; some in black and white. These variations in each area mean it is more of a spectrum than four clear choices, but I hope this segmentation starts to shine a light on the options available.

 

In the complex, fast paced, global world we live in, I believe that visual working has huge potential power. The key to unlocking this power comes from consciously and intentionally choosing the right visual tools for the right jobs. I hope this article has shed some light on this field. In the mean time, if you are interested in finding out more about this area of work, get in touch.

 

Global manufacturer testimonial

We recently provided graphic recording services to a major global manufacturer. They recently sent us this testimonial.
The Scribing Magic drawings certainly added value to our event and created a talking point that brought people together. We were impressed by the graphic recorders ability to clarify our brief, understand it, and ask the right questions to capture a holistic and accurate image of our event. Overall very worthwhile contribution. – SITA

 

 

Want some graphic facilitation training in the US?

One of our partners in the United States is offering a foundational graphic facilitation training. Crowley & Co have been training The Grove style of graphic recording and how to integrate those tools into meeting facilitation for many years. Deirdre Crowley has over 15 years experience in graphics for meetings, organisational communications and in the meeting facilitation space. Her training is quite popular and quite inspirational.

The training is 2.5 days in the Potomac, Maryland area from April 20-22. You can learn more about the contents and approach to this workshop at the Crowley & Co website.

If you are interested in learning more about graphic facilitation and how it can support your meeting energy, group focus, commitment to agreements and the like give us a call at +44 (0)1628 471 114 or drop us a note via our contact form and tell us what you want to explore about making your meetings more productive.

Graphic recording stands in service of the group

One of our core beliefs is that the role of the graphic recorder, and indeed the charts created during meetings, is to serve the group and support group process. The minute the visual output becomes the focus by the graphic recorder we believe the service falls down. The focus of the recorder has got to be the group, not the drawing.

For more information on how we work in service of the group give us a call at +44 (0)1628 471 114 or complete the contact form. We’ll reply as quickly as we can.

Decoding complexity using graphic recording

Authored by John Ashton, lead graphic recorder

During a recent assignment for Scribing Magic, I was asked by @TripwireInc to graphically record* two Information Security events over the course of three days (#InfoSec15 and #BSidesLDN2015).

*Graphic recording is the art of capturing the key thoughts, ideas and discussions that happen during meetings and events. This is achieved using hand-drawn images and text created live in real time to produce visual records that act as aide memoirs for participants and a way of understanding what happened for those that were unable to attend. Continue Reading…

It is not about drawing a pretty picture or the quality of artistic achievement. Graphic recording is about supporting group thinking and making thoughts visible.

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Happy Anniversary to us!

Today is our one year anniversary! One year ago we separated the visual thinking and graphic recording offerings from Meeting Magic to create Scribing Magic as a co-brand and co-creator for working with clients across the board. We are excited about our success so far and look forward to another year of growth and supporting our great clients.

Thank you to those who have engaged us with your visual work. And thank you to our team of graphic recorders, admin and website developers. It has been a very great year. Onward and upward!

If you want to explore how to engage visually and graphically with your groups, with graphic recording, storymaps / rich pictures, corporate animations, illustrations and company cartooning and other visual methods, give us a call at +44 (0)1628 471 114 or complete the contact form with some details of your events. We’ll get back to you as quickly as we can.

Graphic recording in meetings provides the best results when it is built into the design of the agenda from the beginning.

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Graphic recording works when it is done in service to the group.

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