Home » Blog » Media

Category: Media

Graphic recording, flipbook, and video for VYPER

It was a great honour to team up with Valley Youth Partnership for Engagement and Respect (VYPER) – a critically needed youth-adult collaborative project that ran from 2014 to 2016, across the Fraser Health region of BC.

Their mission was to create a community where all youth are healthy, sage, engaged, have meaningful opportunities, and feel like they belong. The project’s aim was to help reduce stigma around mental health and substance use issues, and shows that young people are capable of being active participants in decision-making and contributing to the success of community members.

The Drawing Change team collaborated with the folks at VYPER on a number of projects:

  • live graphic recordings performed at the VYPERence conference so we could validate and capture youth voices in their own words;
  • focus group program evaluations with graphic recording so we could gather input from service providers in a visually useful way,
  • Dozens of quick illustrations that we made into a printed flip-book,
  • then the same illustrations turned into videos with the help of Daniel Ugsang at VYPER.

Sam’s Graphic Recording

pasted-image-at-2016_11_09-03_18-pm

A sample of Tiare’s Graphic Recordings

5-vyper-chilliwack_web

These live recordings show how VYPER focus on empowering youth through meaningful collaboration and consultation. For more on the final outcome of the project, see the resilience report here.

Here’s the flipbook! Tiaré Lani Kela Jung made these iconic images to make “adult youth partnerships” look as awesome as they really are.

Read more

new Visual Practice book about graphic recording, graphic facilitation and more

Visual Practice: Announcing our new book

new Visual Practice book about graphic recording, graphic facilitation and moreAnnouncing a New Book about Visual Practice

By Brandy Agerbeck, Kelvy Bird, Sam Bradd and Jennifer Shepherd

Imagine your ideas drawn — incorporating energy, colour, space, line, scale, icons, figures, metaphors. This is the territory of visual practice, which makes the fleeting and ephemeral nature of spoken conversation concrete.

Visual practitioners make marks that allow people to see their thinking through new lenses. They help people speak up and listen, think critically, find themes, chart relationships, reach understanding, and take action.

https://www.visualpracticebook.com

 

Drawn Together through Visual Practice demonstrates the power of visuals as a primary sensemaking device in an age of unprecedented complexity. With this book, we embrace visual thinking, practice and facilitation as a defining technology of our time.

This anthology connects ideas and practitioners at a moment when our practice is dramatically expanding.  Whether we are visual veterans, bold beginners, or curious companions to the field of visual practice, we will all come together to:

  • Deepen our knowledge by exploring rich and diverse perspectives from 27 cross-disciplinary practitioners on 4 continents
  • Delve into deep and resonant questions at the core of connection and communication that prompt us to pause awhile and reflect on our practice
  • Show up as a trusted and capable partner and work to our true potential
  • Playfully dive into experiments with improvisation, dancineering, kinesthetic modeling, and other valuable processes and delight in the surprising results that will improve our skills and impact
  • Discover refreshing possibilities to make our mark in this growing field and be inspired to help solve the complex puzzles of our time

Leaders in facilitation, conflict mediation, education – and all other areas using visual processes to establish common ground – will find an unparalleled wisdom of experience in these pages.

https://visualpracticebook.com

Visual practitioners make marks that allow people to see their thinking through new lenses. They help people speak up and listen, think critically, find themes, chart relationships, reach understanding, and take action.

Excited? So are we! Here is the Table of Contents:

https://visualpracticebook.com/tableofcontents/

And stay tuned for a free downloadable chapter, and more updates soon.

The editors,

(Left to right) Brandy Agerbeck, Jennifer Shepherd, Kelvy Bird and me, Sam Bradd

Drawn Together through Visual Practice - four editors in the photo

Interview: sharing my favorite resources with Michelle Walker

Recently, Michelle Walker, a creativity coach and visual practitioner in Australia, interviewed me as part of her Spotlight Series. Michelle has a thriving visual practice, and I also learned that she is a fantastic interviewer – we could have talked for hours! In this audio interview, I share my thoughts on my practice, what feeds my creativity, and some of my favorite resources for graphic facilitators.

Interview audio link: http://www.curiousmindsco.com.au/spotlight-on-sam-bradd/

Happily, Michelle and I will reconnect at this year’s International Forum of Visual Practitioners Conference in Washington, DC – hope to see you there.

PS If you liked this interview, you might also enjoy Lynn Cazaly’s interview here. 

sam bradd graphic facilitator interview spotlight series by michelle walker
Some of my favorite resources for visual practitioners.
sam bradd

Interview: my unexpected career path

sam bradd ubc interview graphic facilitationI admit, being a graphic facilitator was an unexpected career path. And I’ve never been happier.

I’m often asked if I retrained at art school, but instead, I pursued a graduate degree in Educational Studies from the University of British Columbia. I was thrilled to be interviewed recently and offer career advice to new grads.

Read the interview here, and my favourite parts are below.

I want every grad to succeed, and “You’ll figure it out” is never helpful career advice. Now, when I talk to students (be they undergrad or graduate), my career advice is about how to be valued by your colleagues and team.

Be useful, do good work, and stay true to your values – this will help you find career happiness.

 

“If I was a new grad, don’t stress about where you’ll work. Put the effort into how you’ll work, instead. This is about understanding your personal strengths: do you prefer team-based projects, or more autonomy, for example? Understanding what are the factors that help you be authentic at work will help you find a rewarding career in perhaps an unlikely setting, and might help you say yes to something you hadn’t considered.”

I use my degree every day. “What I love about this career is that I’m learning something new every day – it’s an amazing way to continue my lifelong education. Graphic facilitation brings together two important parts of my life: working with groups and visual thinking, and it’s led to a creative, rewarding career.CEDOXltUIAAveqQ

“When people find out I draw professionally, people are always surprised I didn’t go to art school. Instead, doing a graduate degree in Educational Studies helped me engage in the inner work that makes me a better educator and facilitator.

“My degree was an opportunity to examine my role in reconciliation, social justice, and cultural safety, for example, which is crucial to my cross-cultural work.”

Basically, any chance you get to learn things, anywhere, take the opportunity.

You can read the full interview here: https://www.grad.ubc.ca/alumni/profile/sam-bradd

Thanks to UBC and the Educational Studies department for a transformational learning experience, and good luck to all the grads of 2016!

Interview: Drawing Clarity at Tech Leadership Conference

Communitech’s signature event is the Tech Leadership Conference, and it delivered on its promise to be inspirational and thought-provoking. Afterwards, Communitech interviewed fellow graphic recorder Liisa Sorsa and I about our backgrounds and how we use visuals to help companies succeed:

“The two have a passion for art and for human relations. Their careers sprung from the realization that graphic recording is as much about understanding people as it is about sketching.”

eamwork! Liisa Sorsa, Erica Bota, Disa Kauk and I created these during the TLC. We made a gallery in a large hallway, then displayed the graphics in the reception area (here)
Teamwork! Graphic recording tech leadership with Liisa Sorsa, Disa Kauk and Erica Bota. These were displayed in a gallery/ hallway during the event, then moved to the reception (here).

I took away that inspiration and leadership can come from anywhere: a quiet walk, prototyping something messy, and it definitely can can follow an unusual path.

My path into graphic recording certainly wasn’t a straight line, and you can read the interview here:

http://news.communitech.ca/news/tlc-2015-drawing-clarity-in-a-digitized-world/

Thanks Communitech for a fantastic event.

Interview: Health Empowerment from Knowledge Transfer

Graphic recording helped with knowledge transfer at a recent women’s heart health event with the Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute.

The VCHRI interviewed the presenters and me and wrote up a great blog post. Thanks for the opportunity to be interviewed and feature graphic recording as a knowledge transfer tool in health care.

sam bradd, vancouver, visual facilitation, what is graphic recording, what is graphic facilitation, graphic illustration, union, health care, womens heart health, cardiovascular health, knowledge transfer, patient engagement, knowledge translation, public engagement, research,
live graphic recording at Your Heart, Your Health women’s health event

Graphic recording in health care connects researchers and dense academic information with patients and communities. The visuals help patients engage with the information – and supports patients in making better health decisions.

Here’s a selection from the article:

“Your Heart Your Health graphic facilitator Sam Bradd had a similar responsibility. Despite the significance of the research itself, and the impact of personal stories, the challenge remained around how to keep the information and conversation alive after the event was over. Bradd met the challenge by creating a high-level visual summary of the event with built-in citations. Essentially, he put the talk into pictures. […]

 

“No one likes to be talked ‘at’ about their health,” says Bradd. “As a patient, I want information about my health care so I can make the best decisions. Knowledge translation is a tool for ensuring patient voices inform researchers, and that good research gets into the hands of people that need it. Any publicly funded research should be accessible to the public, and KT tools – like graphic recording – help with dissemination.”

Read the full article here at http://www.vchri.ca/articles/2015/05/24/empowerment-comes-knowledge-your-heart-your-health

 

MHCC Youth Strategy Report Cover Page

Illustrated Mental Health Strategy- knowledge translation

The Mental Health Commission of Canada asked me to illustrate their new report, “A Mental Health Strategy for Canada: a youth perspective.”

National strategies research what’s not working, what’s needed, and sets out strategies for what’s next. Everyone should be able to understand a national strategy, and making it visual is one way to do it.

MHCC-strategic direction 6Mental Health Commission of Canada Youth Strategy report- illustrationsTwo thirds of young people with mental health problems say that 2/3rds symptoms started in childhood, so it’s important to have a youth perspective on Canada’s Mental Health Strategy. The Youth Advisory Council wrote this report, and wanted illustrations to help show the reader what’s important.

sam bradd, vancouver, canada, infographics, knowledge translation, public engagement, union, unionized, illustrator, best practice, lettering, best practice, visualization, visual learners, infographic, graphic design, mind map, mind mapping, visual practitioner, creativity, sketch noters, facilitator, graphic translation,
Mental Health Commission of Canada – national strategy on mental health

Overall, it’s a great example of knowledge translation in health care. The backbone of any good health document is sound research. Then, it has to be readable. The Youth Advisory Council synthesized and re-wrote it in a clear, easy to understand way. I worked closely with the MHCC’s Knowledge Exchange team and different drafts of the report to come up with the right images. We created over 100 bilingual images in total, and the Youth Council and key stakeholders reviewed my images at each stage. Illustrations explain key concepts, and portraits of Youth Advisory Council members sharing their stories bring the information to life. This community consultation piece is crucial for community engagement.

Mental Health Commission of Canada Youth Strategy report- illustrations Mental Health Commission of Canada Youth Strategy report-next step illustrations
social determinants of health in Mental Health Commission of Canada Youth Strategy report

This report goes along with the original Mental Health Strategy for Canada.

The foreword says, “This document builds on these recommendations and others in order to advance dialogue among mental health advocates, activists, students, community mental health workers, policy makers, or anyone interested in transforming Canada’s mental health system. We hope that you find this document useful for becoming even more engaged in policy discussions that directly impact people of all ages.”

Thanks to 123West for the fantastic document layout.

Here’s to continuing the important work on mental health.

Download the report here: http://www.mentalhealthcommission.ca/English/document/72171/mental-health-strategy-canada-youth-perspective 

 

Sam graphic recording in action

Feature interview about visual thinking on Wacom blog

One of the top questions I get asked about graphic recording is “how did you get into this?”

The team at Wacom was curious, too. They wanted to know more about my passion for helping groups solve problems with drawing. It’s so awesome to be interviewed by the people who make my favourite tablet!

Hop over here for the feature interview about visual thinking on the Wacom blog:http://bamboo.wacom.com/drawing-thinking-tools-the-art-of-meetings/

It’s always about having the right tools for the job.

Excerpt: “To understand Sam Bradd and the magic he conjures as a graphic recorder, we first have to talk about that staple of the modern workplace — the meeting. (I know. And sorry.)

If you just flinched as a PTSD–fueled wave of meeting memories washed over you – the tedium, the boredom, the sense of precious time squandered as nothing useful happens – don’t worry, you’re in good company. Recent studies show that meetings not only do a number on workplace morale and productivity, they can temporarily lower the collective IQs of all involved.

The Meeting Antidote

Now the good news — Bradd has an antidote for all that.”

PS Check out the Bamboo blog here: http://bamboo.wacom.com/

IMG_0180-0.JPG

Graphic recording about signs in Richmond

The City of Richmond, BC began a community dialogue about signage and cultural harmony, and graphic recording was part of the design.

Link to the graphic recording image directly here: http://www.richmond.ca/__shared/assets/SignWorkshopArtist40919.pdf

In situations where people are passionate, I’ve seen graphic recording help. The process supports people during the session. People feel heard. These visuals are an immediate way to acknowledge that people are coming from different places. It’s also a place for reflection. The poster became an interactive area where people could congregate after the event to talk with each other and reflect on what happened. And afterwards, the visuals document the different perspectives.

Importantly, in this dialogue process, we weren’t there to decide on next steps. Instead, the workshop structure led skillfully by Joanna Ashworth helped share views and collect information about next possible actions.

The Richmond Review was on hand to cover the event, and the images were featured in the story.
http://www.richmondreview.com/news/296261131.htmlI

The City of Richmond has information here:

http://www.richmond.ca/busdev/signs/community.htm

sam bradd, vancouver, image, visual facilitation, what is graphic recording, what is graphic facilitation, graphic illustration, union, community diversity, community forum, Richmond cultural harmony, Richmond signs, language, community cohesion, community harmony, case studies, knowledge translation, public engagement, research, vision, innovation in engagement, illustrator, best practice, vector, visualization, visual learners, infographic, graphic design, mind map, mind mapping, visual practitioner, creativity, sketch noters, visual notetaking, facilitator, indigenous, visual thinking, information architects, visual synthesis, graphic translation, group graphics, and ideation specialists, live drawing, group facilitation, community diversity, community forum, Richmond cultural harmony, Richmond signs, language, community cohesion, community harmony, case studies

IMG_0183-0.JPG as featured in the Richmond Review

knowledge translation at Brain Matters in the news

Graphic recording is great for knowledge translation, and it was featured in the 24 hours newspaper this week. Scientist Timothy Caufield wants us to see through the hype in science research, and my visuals were featured alongside his recent Brain Matters talk. The talk was part of a two day conference on brain science and social responsibility. My job was to listen to leading experts in neuroethics and translate their talks into visuals.

Article link: http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/2014/03/13/hype-hurts-scientific-progress-conference.

sam bradd, artist, vancouver, image, what is graphic recording, what is graphic facilitation, illustration, knowledge translation, Brain Matters conference, Timothy Caufield science spin and hype, neuroethics conference, engagement, resources, community building, what is collaboration, union, illustrator, best practice, vector, best practice, visualization, visual learners, infographic, graphic design, information design, non profit, health, knowledge translation, education, sustainability, mind map, mind mapping, visual practitioner, creativity, sketch noters, visual notetaking, consultant, facilitator, visual thinking, information architects, visual synthesis, graphic translation, group graphics, and ideation specialists, live drawing, group facilitation, group collaborative work, world cafe, conference, information design, information designers, educator, non-profit, progressive, environment, sustainability, community, health, adult learners, adult education, empowerment, justice,  leadership, team building, knowledge transfer, visual management, experiential graphicssam bradd, artist, vancouver, image, what is graphic recording, what is graphic facilitation, illustration, knowledge translation, Brain Matters conference, Timothy Caufield science spin and hype, neuroethics conference, engagement, resources, community building, what is collaboration, union, illustrator, best practice, vector, best practice, visualization, visual learners, infographic, graphic design, information design, non profit, health, knowledge translation, education, sustainability, mind map, mind mapping, visual practitioner, creativity, sketch noters, visual notetaking, consultant, facilitator, visual thinking, information architects, visual synthesis, graphic translation, group graphics, and ideation specialists, live drawing, group facilitation, group collaborative work, world cafe, conference, information design, information designers, educator, non-profit, progressive, environment, sustainability, community, health, adult learners, adult education, empowerment, justice, leadership, team building, knowledge transfer, visual management, experiential graphicsAnd a snapshot of the ‘after’ visuals, about 45 minutes later.

Three great highlights stood out at this conference. First, I didn’t know anything about neuroethics before this conference (um, in my life it’s not really a topic around the dinner table!?) but I learned just how neuro-ethical decisions do touch many areas of society that I care about. Is chemical-based rehabilitation for criminals coersive? Should we redesign education to better suit the adolescent brain? What’s the role of neuroethics in state security? How do we use brain imaging to measure subjective pain? How can these questions not be fascinating…

Second, presenters were really excited to see a fresh perspective on their research presentations. Academic conferences use visuals, but they’re usually powerpoint. Their talks were “translated” (what health/science calls knowledge translation) into graphic recordings, right in front of them.

And finally –  I had the absolute pleasure of working with Avril Orloff. This conference needed two graphic recorders due to the schedule – and what a treat! Together, we created 13 eight-foot images in total, and for some talks we worked in tandem. Conference organizers will make the images available soon.