Last week I went along to UX Sketch Club here in London, hosted by Eva-Lotta Lamm, and we learned to make sketchnotes – a visual note taking technique. Some excellent examples of sketchnotes are those on the RSA website, including this one.

And you can see loads more examples here on flickr.

The next time you’re studying for an exam, you could try making some sketchnotes from your existing, conventional, written notes to help consolidate what you’ve learnt. Having said that, during the class we practised making sketchnotes in real-time while listening to a speaker, which is a little more difficult.

It’s hard trying to sketch fast enough to be able to keep up with what is being said, and either you end up missing chunks of the talk or you end up with scribbles. We all discovered that when you only have a few seconds to draw something, any natural drawing talent disappears out of the window and it’s a level playing field.

The talk we listened to in Sketch Club was this talk, though we only listened to the first 5 or so minutes of it. It’s called “When Ideas have Sex”…

Erm… Eva, you sure you want us to sketch the stuff we used to sketch into the back pages of our books in high school?

Luckily we were all true professionals… to an extent. And the talk is mostly about how evolution and mixing of genes has led to us becoming increasingly smart and creative in what we do.

I present some sketches for your amusement. If you watch some of the TED talk, maybe you can work out what the hell I’ve drawn here. Bear in mind each sketch took about 20 seconds. :-)

Things didn't turn out as bad as we were expecting after all.

Nothing happens when I try clicking my rock.

I dont think this needs a caption.

And candles are so big...

Last week was quite a big week for User Experience Design in London, as designers flew in from all over the world to attend the three-day UX London event which featured a devastatingly good list of speakers.

Although I didn’t make it to UX London itself, I managed to get a spot for UX Bookclub London, which in April doesn’t usually involve reading a book much, it’s more an excuse to get together with some of the speakers from UX London to discuss all things UX.

I was lucky enough to meet the authors of many books that are lying on my shelf here, and shook hands with some of the pioneers of user centred design. It was a chance to pick their brains on a range of topics from the future of UX and our interaction with technology down to the small things that bug me at work each and every day. Like bugs.


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