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AUSTAFE SimonBanks Artwork graphic facilitation

Austafe National Conference Artwork

Graphic Facilitation: Making Ideas Come Alive

I had a great time recently emceeing a 2 day conference on the Gold Coast. I kept myself very busy as I was also the Visual Facilitator for the event. It was a great mix of the things I love to do – draw and talk! As with previous conferences where I was fulfilling a similar role, I noticed some great things that Graphic Facilitation and Visual Communication can bring to the audience. 1- It provides a massive point of interest. I had some great chats with people as they were walking in and out between breaks about what I was doing, recording and visualising. The drawings held people. T-shirts tech long sleeve The visuals got people attention. The visuals held people attention. 2- The use of visuals and graphics is a great conversation starter. Every time that delegates were looking at the visuals together, great work-based conversations were happening and the conversation was alive! Not the stifled polite chit chat you sometimes here at an event. A conference should encourage great work conversations and the meeting of minds. The art helped it to happen. 3- The process helps to sift through the mountains of words and capture the key stuff. Over 2 days there was aLOT of information. As the brain can only take in 7 +/2 bits of information at once, the visuals had a really important role. 4- The recognition and memory of information is almost instant with the use of visuals. When I went through the 2 days of drawing at the end of the conference, I could remember everything that I had drawn. adidas scarpe More importantly, when I was discussing it with the audience, they could remember all of the key points that I had drawn. Try doing that with bullet point filled PowerPoint presentations. 5- It has to look good. When you use great colour and images, it brings your picture and the story to life. Our mind and soul craves great design and colour. Research shows that using 6 or more colours hugely increases retention. adidas superstar For me, it also has to be something that clients would be happy to hang up in their office, not just scribing words in different colour pens. 6- Everyone likes it when you put in images that people know or recognise. All of the above was based on my observations on the day but there is LOADS of research and on the power of visuals for recognition and learning. As an artist, I have known the power of art in visual communication and telling messages. I am delighted that I can use those skills (I knew the arts degree would come in handy…) to bring that energy and learning to a wider audience.

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