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What does one of my workshops look like? Check out the video.

November 16th, 2009 · Uncategorized

Mark Magliocco shot this video of BarCamp Philly, where I did a couple of mini workshops. If  you are wondering what one of my visual thinking workshops looks like, these give a little glimpse. I'm mixed in with other footage, so if you want to skip to my workshop segments, skip to the times below.


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BarCamp Philly Images and Shoutouts

November 16th, 2009 · Uncategorized

Had a spectacular time at BarCamp Philly 2009.

Fascinating mix of people from many professional and creative worlds.

Here is a brief wrap up of my personal high points:

I had the pleasure of leading a mini-workshop on "Applied Imagination." In the photo above one of the participants shared his insights. I got a lot of great feedback on this session.

This image is from another mini-workshop I led called "Drawing For Non-Artists." My goal was to get people comfortable with representing whatever was in their heads on paper by breaking it down into simplified forms. People enjoyed this one a lot too. Brought me back to the days when I used to teach art in public schools in New York City.

Had a blast doing graphic recording of three sessions. Somebody was kind enough to take this snap of me doing a graphic capture of a session on the present and future of FaceBook.

This is an uncropped photo of the facebook graphic recording.

This one is from Carlos Silva's session "Train Your Client."

Above: graphic recording of Mark Magliocco's fascinating session, "10 Emerging Web Trends." When Mark brought up all the various "Camps" he's had a hand in producing since the last BarCamp Philly, someone joked that he should start yet another "TrendCamp," where people would talk about emerging tech and societal trends.

I met a lot of great people. Chris Myers of UArts set me up with rolls of white paper, corkboard walls, and his own stash of day glow markers. You rock, Chris! Also met Whitney Hess in person, who gave a great talk on going independent. I quit my day job awhile ago, but I keep learning from other folks' experiences. Great to meet Rob Linsalata from M (a creative agency based in Philly) at the applied imagination session. Of course BarCamp doesn’t stop with the daytime activities. I had a blast shooting the breeze with the infamous Will Evans at the National Mechanics Shmitten Kitten 90’s Dance Party.

Finally, huge, huge thanks to everyone who helped make the event rock. Particular thanks to Roz Duffy, Kelani Nichole, JP Toto, and Kara Lafleur. A fantastic event like this doesn't happen by itself. Take a bow!

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Visual Thinking in Service of Climate Change Action

November 10th, 2009 · Uncategorized

Visualizing Ideas From the Barcelona Climate Talks

When dealing with an issue as contentious as how to address global climate change, we need all the help we can get.

Ole Qvist of Bigger Picture sent out a request to the visual thinking and practice community asking for everyone to contribute with visuals which can explain some of the key messages and concepts discussed during the Barcelona Climate Talks leading up to the COP15 UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December.

The image above is my contribution, illustrating this quote:

“It would be great if our shared vision just dawned on us….but it does demand compromise and hard work”

to see other contributions from folks like Roy Blumenthal and Nancy Margulies, Ole Qvist and others, check out this slide show:

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The State of Indy Hall, In Pictures

November 2nd, 2009 · Uncategorized

Six months after moving into a bigger, better, space. It was time to get the the Indy Hall coworking community together to take stock of where the Hall stood, and where the community wants it to go. As part of the Indy Hall community, I was glad to record the event on a couple of their white boards.

indy hall town hall detail
(click on image to see larger version)

Indy Hall Town Hall Graphic Recording 3
(click on image to see larger version)

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Introducing the 140 Characters Conference Illustrated eBook

October 23rd, 2009 · Uncategorized

Download the 140 Characters Conference Illustrated eBook

I have pulled all my visual notes from the first 140 Characters conference together into this free eBook. It was a mind blowing conference about what founder Jeff Pulver calls “now media.” Streams of media that so many of us are using to connect with people, ideas, and information, embodied by Twitter and Facebook.

Speakers came from business, science, the arts, politics, journalism, and the non-profit sector. To revisit your conference experience, or if you could not attend, check out the140 Characters Conference IllustratedeBook.A picture is worth a thousand words, and maybe even a couple of dozen tweets. Download it here.

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Visual Notes From ITP’s 30th Anniversary, Part 1: 1-in-1 Projects

October 2nd, 2009 · Uncategorized

I am creating visual notes to document different facets of NYU’s Interactive Telecommunication Program’s 30th anniversary celebrations. Here are a few of my interpretations of projects that people are creating for the 1-in-1 projects. In these projects, alumni, staff, and current students have 24 hours to create projects which will be displayed the following day.

Catalog Of Things That Don’t Exist:

ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: Catalog of Impossible Things

Cross Talk:

ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: Cross Talk

Voice From the Past: ITP Alumni Edition:

ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: Voice From the Past--ITP Alumni Edition

Apples To Apples Agent:

ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: Apples to Apples Agent


ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: TweetGrass

Emotional State Visualizer:

ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: Emotional State Visualizer

Crank LEDs

ITP 30th Anniversary  1-in-1 Visual Notes: Crank LED

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Recap of VizThink NYC 2

September 27th, 2009 · Uncategorized

A Visual Approach to Public Speaking-VizThink NYC

I recently had the pleasure of prototyping a workshop I’m calling A Visual Approach to Public Speaking at VizThink NYC on September 24, 2009.

The concept: When you give a speech, you are providing a service. People have needs, you have offerings, and you want to offer them a speech that serves those needs tailored out of what you have to offer. In this workshop our goal was to use visual techniques to find out an audiences needs and unearth our own skills and knowledge that could speak to those needs. Next we created brief speeches that aimed to address what our audience was interested in. By the end of the workshop, participants each gave mini-speeches to small groups.

What worked:

1) Using all-image mind maps to get a lot of ideas on paper and share a lot of information quickly. Using a mind map to generate ideas is an example of divergent thinking. Mind maps are very useful for this.

The use of images to depict areas of knowledge and areas of challenge got people to connect to their ideas in a visceral way, and made for a memorable medium to share with their group members.

2) People found the idea of a useful public presentation being the intersection of what you can offer and what people need useful.

A Visual Approach to Public Speaking-VizThink NYC

3) Live graphic recording: It was powerful to see the narrative of the workshop unfolding onto a wall sized mural (above) as the evening progressed, courtesy of Heather Willems of Image Think. The resulting image is an information rich record for people who want to review the workshop.

4) After the divergent thinking of creating the initial mind maps, converging on a few relevant ideas and putting them in a sequence that made a point seemed to work well.

What to tweak next time:

1) Pacing: I needed to pick up the pace. Instead of demonstrating something and then letting people repeat my process, I just need to start demonstrating it, and then let people get going.

2) Focus: In my own personal examples, I included some personal items that took the focus more in a therapy direction and less in a business direction. There is nothing wrong with this, but for this crowd, and for any professionally oriented crowd, I would stick to professional examples.

3) Practicality: I think this would be more practical if I had people map out a presentation that they actually thought they would have to give soon, and map out what they know about the intended audience, instead of having them tailor a talk to people at the workshop who they may, realistically, never have to present to.

4) Start with goals: What do you want to happen as a result of your speech? When we engage in public speaking, we have goals of our own—It’s not just about serving the needs of our audience. We want them to take action, to buy something, to consider a new approach, to approve something, to be entertained, or moved, or any of a number of things. Next time, I would focus more on goals of a speech, which are the foundation of its success. This would be a natural fit with focusing on an actual speech we are going to have to give.

Conclusion: In the end, successful public speaking comes down to having clear goals, knowing your audience, giving them something that resonates, and thus moving them in the direction that matches your goals. Visual thinking can help. But it’s only part of the story. Another big part is practice. So as I keep practicing this workshop, I will keep you posted on what I learn.

Big thanks to LiquidNet for hosting us, to Ray DeLaPena, MJ Broadbent and the VizThink NYC crew for organizing and promoting the event, Heather Willems of Image Think who provided graphic recording, and everyone who gave me feedback.

If you were at the workshop and have further thoughts about it, I would love to hear about it, either in the comments or at jonny(dot)goldstein@gmail.com. Your insight really helps!

Link to photos of the event.

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