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Sketch noting: A conversation with lead Indian sketch notes maker
It was interesting to see the sketch note of an educational conference done by Delhi-based medical physicist Deepak Arora who has honed the skill with good long practice. He had sent his latest sketch note through mobile and agreed to a conversation to tell how he acquired this skill. I am a fan and follower of his sketch noting work.

"Sketch noting is an interesting process of visual note-taking by connecting both verbal and visual components of a communication simultaneously. For the recent sketch note, I did a bit of researching on the concept note of the conference and visualized some of the sketches that could accompany the keywords that were in the themes and sub-themes of the conference."

"Though, sketch noting is a personal form of note-taking that activates the brain cells the same way as doodling with additional advantage of connecting text with the visual," he added.

He is of the view that the skill of sketch noting has been found useful for one's cognitive development. And, if the skill is passed on to senior students and researchers, the overviews of topics of study become vivid leading to an acquisition of active working memory and development of higher order thinking skills.

He said that he was inspired by some sketch notes available on the internet related to management studies and started doing the freelancing sketch noting work for certain events and process related to his profession and after making twenty odd sketch notes he acquired insights into relating text messages, words and line drawings quickly.

"It is more of a skill based on learning-by-doing that does not require any artistic ability at all since drawings are not real but simple representations of the reality with optional decoration with colours or shading," he held.

"With practice, anyone can become skillful in transforming ideas after reading the print media or listening to oral presentation, into visual communication by structuring thoughts and concepts with restricted text through key phrases and short sentences or punch lines," he elaborated.

He said that he started with linear sketch notes first and then graduated to webbed sketch notes which are more elaborate in which concepts in content inspire the visuals.

He uses the non-ruled notebook to prepare sketch notes by going through the cycle of listening, synthesising, arranging main ideas and visualizing the sketches.

I too had been trying my hand on sketch noting but have not got the finesse as Arora has. He has promised that during his next visit to Jaipur, he would give me some coaching on making more vivid sketch notes.

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