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Entries in Travel (56)


Sketchnoting World Domination Summit 2013

ON FRIDAY I will leave very early in the morning for Portland, Oregon and my friend Chris Guillebeau's World Domination Summit. I've heard about Chris' amazing event for years — now I'll have a chance to experience it for myself.

I'll of course be sketchnoting the talks at the event, but I'm going to push my sketchnoting farther, capturing the travel and overall experience of being at the event — like I did for SXSW 2010:

SXSW Interactive 2010: On the Plane / In Austin

I'll be posting my sketchnotes to Flickr, Instagram and Twitter with my iPhone camera during the weekend, so follow me there to see those as they go up.

If you happen to be attending WDS 2013 in Portland this weekend — say hello!


The Sketchnote Handbook Texas Tour 2013


I HADN'T PLANNED on visiting Texas, until my friend Michael Clayton, design chair and professor at University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) in San Antonio, Texas, invited me to speak to the local AIGA and lead a workshop at UIW. Next thing you know, I was booked for SXSW and partnering with Moleskine.

But I had the most fun being able to take my son, Nathan to Texas with me, for his first taste of the bigger than life state.

AIGA San Antonio Sketchnote Talk

My first event after arrival was a talk on sketchnoting to the San Antonio AIGA chapter. I was honored to speak to a full house — 90 people — at the Southwest School of Art. After my presentation, I was able to sign 20 or so books for attendees and say hello at the same time.

Full house at Southwest School of Art to hear about sketchnoting!  Sketchnotes by @JKmiloMarin from my AIGA talk in San Antonio.

UIW Sketchnote Workshop

In the morning, I had the privilege of presenting a sketchnoting workshop to 15 of Michael's students at the University of the Incarnate Word.

Sketchnote Workshop at The University of the Incarnate Word

Together, we worked from the basics of sketchnoting to practicing sketchnotes by watching videos and then critiquing work of the students. We had a great time and I learned about designing a sketchnoting day workshop later this year.

Sean McCabe

After the workshop, I took time to meet and talk with Sean McCabe, designer and hand-letterer. We had a great time at Local Coffee talking type, our current projects, how we got where we are now and illustration secrets.

Meetup w/ Sean McCabe at Local Coffee on Broadway

Exploring San Antonio

With my work completed, Nathan and had time to explore the San Antonio River Walk, and The Alamo. The River Walk is quite beautiful. We capped the night perfectly with BBQ on the River Walk with Michael and his wife, Mindy.

Remember The Alamo!
San Antonio Riverwalk  The Alamo

SXSW 2013

On Saturday, Michael, Nathan and I headed North to Austin to get our jam-packed SXSW day going. By the time we arrived in Austin, lines were already forming for parking structures. We were able to find a spot on 6th & Brazos.

My first event was a Moleskine sponsored meet-up at Jo's Coffee Downtown, where we met with people and gave away custom designed Moleskine Pocket Sketchbooks. We had a good turnout at the busy coffee shop and I had a chance to see friends like Ryan Irelan and Todd Sattersten and meet new people too.

Sketchnote Handbook and Sketchnote Book! #msketchnote
Custom Sketchnote Moleskine from @moleskine_world  Custom Sketchnote Moleskine from @moleskine_world
Ideas, Not Art Flap  Sketchnoting Tips

At noon I met with a local friend, Keith Pearce, and we all had BBQ for lunch at Lambert's. After lunch, we were off to the Austin Convention Center (ACC) to register for badges and find my green room, to prep for my mentoring session.

I was fortunate to meet Elaine Wherry, co-founder of Meebo while waiting for our sessions to start. She was interested in drawing and note-taking, so I gave her a custom Moleskine and a copy of my book. It was cool to share with Elaine.

Hilton Garden Inn waiting for my SXSW mentoring session to start. Nice space!

My mentoring session was at the other Hilton hotel a few blocks away, so I headed there with my SXSW guide. After setting up, 2 of the 6 mentees came over (not sure if the other 4 got lost or just bailed out) but the time with the two visitors was great.

Book Reading & Signing

I had to get back to the ACC for my book reading, so once my session was done, I headed back over and got myself setup backstage, while my friend C.C. Chapman read from his latest book, Amazing Things Will Happen.

When my turn came up, rather than read from my very visual book, I chose instead to share my book writing process through images and stories, which was well received. You can hear the audio here:

After my talk, I met with audience members, then made my way to the book signing table to sign Sketchnote Handbooks at a table near the bookstore.

It was great to get to know readers and sign their books in fun ways. It seemed as though I signed 20 or 30 books during my 20 minute window, then I signed a bunch more for the bookstore's stock. I've heard that my book sold 80+ copies at SXSW — Peachpit's best seller!

Moleskine Meetup at Mulberry

After my book signing, I was interviewed by a film crew from an Alberta university, then it was off to the wrap-up meet-up at Mulberry, to see what fans had captured and to hang out to end the day. I learned that Michael had been wandering around the ACC, giving away custom Sketchnote Moleskines to whomever he saw drawing.

The Moleskine promotion went very well. So well, in fact, that I keep hearing for people who missed the giveaway or who weren't at SXSW at all being interested in one of these custom sketchbooks. I think I need to chat with Moleskine.

Mike, Nathan and I were wiped out after a day of working hard at SXSW. Back at the car, we crawled in and began the hour trip back to San Antonio, feeling really great about our 3 days promoting The Sketchnote Handbook in Texas.

On Sunday, we spent time exploring the San Antonio River Walk, riding on the barge tour and just having a great time together on our last day in Texas. That evening, we hung out with Michael's family before departing for Milwaukee.

Lessons Learned

Here are a few lessons learned on my Texas book tour:

  • In-person is important - It's critical to be on the ground, meeting people and sharing your book. I met so many great people, and I believe personal contact really makes the difference. Being on stage to share my story, in mentoring sessions to talk with people, or just meeting folks at the Moleskine events was very rewarding and encouraging.
  • Have something to give away - When I travel I always carry a copy of my book to give to someone. I've given books away in Portland and now Austin, and in every case the recipients are so pleased. I had the double fortune of having custom Moleskines to give away in Austin, and people loved them! Even if it's something small, like a card, it makes a difference.
  • Build in downtime - With Nathan along, I was quite busy. I built in some downtime for us to explore, but the SXSW trip was pretty intense. If I had to do it all again, I would have built in more downtime in Austin.
  • Pack light - This was probably the lightest I've packed for 4 days and it was a great feeling having so little to haul along. Now that I present my workshops and talks only with the iPad 2, I leave my MacBook Pro 13" at home. It's great to do so much with just an iPhone and iPad.

Travels Ahead

I have a few more Sketchnote Handbook events coming up in the next few months — Judson College in April, Grand Rapids IxDA in May and most likely Minneapolis/St. Paul this June. I can't wait for these events to come now!


Sketchnoting The Summit Series

THE SUMMIT SERIES is an unconventional conference, created by and for young entrepreneurs to connect, teach, learn and change the world for the better.

I've been commissioned to capture Summit Series Basemcamp in Lake Tahoe's Squaw Valley this weekend. I'm stoked to experience this fascinating event and capture it visually as a blend of both traditional and travel sketchnote styles.

What's the Summit Series?

The Summit Series began several years ago as an invite-only ski trip to connect with selected guests, financed on the founder's personal credit card. Now the Summit Series hosts thousands of luminaries at a time, meeting in unusual locations like cruise ships and ski resorts, featuring a wide variety of un-conferency activities like yoga and rock climbing as well as talks and workshops. The Series is managed by a team of young entrepreneurs who work together from different locations around the world.

The ultimate goal of the Series is to get interesting people together and share the experience of learning, giving and making a difference as a community.

The event I'm attending and sketchnoting Basecamp, a smaller gathering of about 650 guests at Sqauw Valley Resort in Lake Tahoe.

I can't wait to share my experience here when I return.


Lambeau Field Pilgrimage

A CRISP WIND rolled across Lambeau Field on a sunny, December day. My pilgrimage to Green Bay to see the Packers host the Oakland Raiders was my second — the first happened many years ago when I was just a child.

Lambeau at Sunset

Lambeau is a beautiful stadium, updated in such a tasteful way that tradition is maintained while wrapped in a well-designed, modern structure.

The Packer Hall of Fame was a treat, featuring all sorts of items and artifacts from previous teams, players and championships. I can't wait to make a return trip, to spend a full day exploring the Hall in detail.

The game experience was wonderful. Our seats were ideal, with a great view of the field and access to Lambeau's club level. Cheering fans and a 46-16 win over the Raiders completed my "Frozen Tundra" experience.

Here are a few images from my Lambeau Field set on Flickr:

1996 Championship Helmet & Shoes 2010 Donald Driver Helmet & Jersey IMG_3075.jpg
Me in the Trophy Room Game Ticket Lambeau Field w/ flying flag

Storyline Conference Sketchnotes

Storyline Sketchnotes

I'VE BEEN BACK HOME for a week since attending Donald Miller's Storyline Conference in Portland Oregon. While I was there, I captured live sketchnotes of the event for myself and to share with others. I had a fabulous time.

I was inspired by the stories Don shared, encouraged to review and better understand my history and challenged to live a better story.

If you look at the Storyline Flickr set, you'll see iPhone photos of my sketchnotes taken at the event (black & white) and the scans with cream backgrounds.

The sketchnotes have been well-received by Don himself, fellow Storyline attendees and even those who weren't able to make the event:

"Check out @rohdesign's notes from the recent Storyline Conference!"
- Don Miller

"Mike, thanks for doing this and putting them out there. A "light" went inside my head today on Donald Miller's book "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years" and the "spark" is your notes you took. I will report back to you and then you know how things are going."
- Chad Jackson

"Thank you, thank you!!! I was just the slightest bit devasted that I couldn't make it to Storyline and what a blessing to get to read this!! And the design made me want to go make stuff. Thanks, endlessly, again..."
- Tonya

"Awesome!! Can't wait to look through these! What a treat for those of us who didn't make it!!!!"
- Kim Alford

I've included the entire set of scanned sketchnotes here for your viewing enjoyment.

Be sure to check out my Portland Travelogue Sketchnotes too.

Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 01-02 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 03-04 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 05-06 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 07-08 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 09-10 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 11-12 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 13-14 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 15-16 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 17-18 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 19-20 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 21-22 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 23-24 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 25-26 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 27-28 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 29-30 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 31-32 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 33-34 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 35-36 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 37-38 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 39-40 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 41-42 Storyline Conference 2011 Sketchnotes: 43-44