The story behind my first sketch note

Pst! I’m a freelance sketch note artist

Liz and Mollie and Susan Cain sketch note

I gave sketch noting a go

I’d seen a few LinkedIn posts of people live scribing at conferences, and I thought I’d have a go at taking illustrated notes for this webinar. I’d never sketched anything in real time before and it took a few minutes to get into the rhythm of processing ideas into words and pictures.

For me, the art of scribbling across the page was uplifting after a long day at work and I really enjoyed the process. I felt energised and motivated to watch the whole event, and it helped me to digest key ideas. I kept asking myself, what practical ideas could I apply for myself after this webinar?

What I did next with my sketch note

The Zoom call ended. What now? I was surprised by how proud I was of my doodled page of key takeaways and felt like I needed to do something more with them. At the time, I was strictly sticking to posting on Instagram as a weekly blog for Creatives and didn’t have any content ready for that week. So, I turned my hand scribbled sketches into a digitally drawn image, ready for Instagram (this is where my preferred square format comes from).

Imposter syndrome crept in and I nearly didn’t post it. I was a huge fan of the people in the webinar and was scared they would think my sketch notes were silly. Especially because Liz Fosslien is an incredibly skilled illustrator herself. In the end, the pressure to consistently post on my Instagram blog and all the time & effort that went into my sketch note gave me the kick I needed. I shared it with the world, and I’m glad I did.

The response to my sketch note

After an unusually prolonged period of waiting for feedback from strangers on the internet, I remembered why I wanted to create the sketch note in the first place; to process ideas from the live Q&A and better understand my own interpretation. It was a bonus that I’d created something that could help others too. I was blown away by the response from my sketch note and the doors it opened for other opportunities.

Your turn!

After reading this blog post, I hope you feel inspired to create a sketch note for yourself. Be brave and share it with the world. See what happens. Ask yourself, did you enjoy the creative process? Did sketch noting make you think any differently? Tag me so I can cheer you on!

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