When was the last time you drew your own story?
As visual practitioners, artists, recorders, facilitators, storytellers, scribes, strategists or whatever you call yourself, we each bring our unique style to our craft. Such personalization is truly one-of-a-kind. It demands a level of authenticity that takes all of us, all we have. And that takes time.
When was the last time you asked yourself why it took so long to churn out that chart? Or how different was the way they saw the story versus the way you depicted it? What look or feel did they have in mind that totally threw you for a loop? And, even if you and your client were totally aligned, why does the process always seem to take so long?
Let’s face it. Visual storytelling is personal. The results are original. Originality is rarely birthed in minutes.
Further, the stories we represent must often communicate far beyond the ears or eyes of those that were in the room with us when we recorded or facilitated live. In a world that craves customization, we are mutually asked to deliver tailored results that can somehow still satisfy the ‘one size fits all’ solution. As a visual practitioner, I catch myself constantly managing this tension. To effectively tackle the many-pronge challenges we as visual practitioners face, I’m always seeking ways to simplify my workflow and make it more accessible and inclusive to increasingly diverse audiences. In parallel, I’m always seeking to maintain my own style and personal touch.
Here enters a new tool: Welcome Drawify!
I was first introduced to Drawify while conducting ethnographic research with visual practitioners to learn more about their needs surrounding digital technology, tools and techniques. A focus group participant mentioned the advent of automating the work of a visual practitioner. I was instantly curious! They suggested taking a look at something called “Drawify” among other tools. As I dug into this notion, I became less fascinated (or fearfully furious, no?) with the idea of automation and encouraged by the heart behind making visual communications more simple, accessible, inclusive and impactful for any and all.
I applied to be a Drawifier. And, as part of the application process, I found myself drawing my own story (pictured with this post) with a new purpose. In becoming part of the global Drawify team, I was inspired with refreshed hope for both my work and those that experience its value around the world. I was recharged by illustrating anew the concepts and metaphors that we so desperately thirst for to make sense out of the magnifying complexity of our time.
Since early December of 2020, I’ve been honored to be part of this visual startup known as Drawify. We are a colorful band of practitioners with more soul and passion that I could ever imagine. We come together, united by a simple set of visual values with no real anticipation of repayment beyond the love of drawing. One such value,“make mom proud,” often keeps me motivated as, on late Friday nights when I draw alone, I remember that someone may be able to take my lines and make meaning for themselves, their audience and this world through Drawify.
As a visual practitioner, Drawify is a trustworthy tool in my toolkit. It by no means replaces me, but augments my style and workflow: it’s fantastic and my clients think so too! Some of the ways I employ Drawify in my work include:
- Exploring illustrative options with Drawify as a starting point. Stop the guesswork in how your clients would like to see their stories unfold; use Drawify to build charts and layouts in real time.
- Conceptualizing on the fly. Build out complex ideas with the diverse set of visuals already illustrated and then, with your clients, use them as a launching point to develop yours more quickly.
- Leveraging your unique gifts by bringing it to life. Drawify is a unique way for visual practitioners to be inspired and prototype independently. Let the failed attempts move faster to get your to the custom solution your clients crave in half the time.
As we look towards the future of our work, it's thrilling to see how technology can be a vehicle to amplify and reimagine. Get in touch with me or another Drawifier to learn more about the tool and discounts to get you started!
Erin & the Drawify team!