Monthly Archives: July 2014

The illustration sprint

You may be familiar with the design sprint, or the book sprint, or the software development sprint, but have you heard of the illustration sprint? I wouldn’t be surprised if you hadn’t, because I just made it up.

The reason for this neologism is that I was recently contacted by the author of a book about startups in Germany, and he wanted a lot of illustrations done quickly. His idea was to sit down for a day and create as many illustrations for the book as possible.

I immediately liked the idea, but realized that the sprint required careful planning. For one thing, the style of the illustrations had to be determined beforehand. Fortunately, my collaborator really liked my sketchnotes about a talk by Mercedes Bunz.

Mercedes Bunz: Copy & Paste (3)


After we had established a date, we sat down together at my kitchen table, and started drawing. Surprisingly, only a few images went into the bin, while 36 drawings were considered good enough to be reproduced in the book. Considering that we worked for eight hours straight, that is an average of 13 minutes per drawing!

Here are some of the results:
Illustration sprint


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The visionary kiosk

Recently, I was asked to harvest some ideas for the future of a cultural centre in Berlin, Acud. While planning the event with the organizers, we came up with the idea of setting up a ‘visionary kiosk’ (Visionenkiosk). It consisted of four wooden panels connected by hinges, which roughly resembles the shape of the building in which Acud is situated. I immediately liked the idea very much.

Acud macht neu

A few weeks later, the kiosk was set up in Acud’s courtyard, and despite intermittent rain, a few dozen people came to talk to me, and I painted their ideas on the kiosk’s walls. It was especially popular with the kids who requested things like “a lion”, “an elephant” and “a ninja with flaming swords. Here’s a shot taken by one of the organizers, which shows me surrounded by a bunch of children:

VisionenkioskNeedless to say, I had a great time!

Flickr set

More images from the event


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0.5 seconds of fame

In June I did an amazing graphic recording gig for Oracle in Madrid. It was my biggest graphic recording gig yet, with a crowd of 800 people watching what I did on stage. Fortunately, I was supported by a fantastic live band,
Rockaoke (aka The Applications), who kept everyone happy with their musical interludes.

I also had a videographer who kept his camera on what I was drawing. However, only 0.5 seconds of this material made it into the final two-and-a-half minute clip about the event. Here’s my half second of fame in an animated gif …

Graphic Recording for Oracle in Madrid

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Coding da Vinci

Coding da Vinci was a 10-week long hackathon organized by the Open Knowledge Foundation, Wikimedia Germany, Deutsche Digitale Bibliothek and Servicestelle Digitalisierung. I was present for the opening on April 26 / 27 as well as for the presentation of the final results and award ceremony in the Jewish Museum Berlin on July 6.

Coding da Vinci Graphic Recording 26 / 27 April

(click to see the image in original size)

While I wasn’t able to record all projects (28 were submitted to the project page), I could at least capture all 17 finalists, and the award winners. Congratulations to everyone who made it to the end, especially to Kati and Tomi and their Cyber Beetle (my favorite project).


At the end of the day, it was a very challenging but also very rewarding experience. Everyone I met was friendly and genuinely appreciative of what I did. And I think the results speak for themselves!

The entire set of images can be found here.

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