We all know that a picture says more than a thousand words. The problem with that truism only is that it takes most of us far more time to create that picture than it takes us to generate those thousand words. We are a wordy culture, and the more complex our ideas become, the more we tend to rely on words to convey those ideas. Eloquence becomes the approach of choice when artistic expression through visuals is perceived as a rare talent. For the art of visual story-telling is considered just that: an art that is close to impossible to learn. You either have this gift, or you don’t. According to common sense, the artist might require some personal discipline to succeed in his work, but this is not a trade that can be acquired through training. Personally, I harbour the hope that visual story-telling can be taught, trained, and learned, but my own unsuccessful experience so far unfortunately doesn’t offer any proof. Alas …
All the more I was delighted to find an example that presents a vivid and accessible story of the adaptive cycle. Graphics designer Simon Kneebone developed this series of sketches together with Ika Darnhofer, who researches rural resilience and farm modernisation as part of the rethink project.
* graphics reused with kind permission by Ika Darnhofer
The power of expression that comes from the synergy between the idea and the image is just striking. And it’s heartening to see that such synergy cannot only occur in a single person’s brain: a symbiotic collaboration of two individuals can achieve a pretty compelling result. For in the end, regardless of origin and ownership, good images are invaluable tools to support the tales we tell in our quest to to increase innovation literacy.
If you know more such examples, please share them.
One thought on “Telling the story”
You are right, great imagery.