Chapter-by-Chapter Sketchnoting

When sketchnoting a book, do you take lots of notes along the way, or wait until you’ve finished reading and then go back to create some helpful visual summaries?

I’ve experimented with both approaches. I describe my read-the-whole-book-first process in this video: How to Sketchnote a Book.

With the latest book I’ve been reading, How to Be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi, I’ve been sketchnoting each chapter right after I read it, and it’s that process that I share in the video above.

Here are some previous videos in this series that you might enjoy checking out:

And here are a few examples of how the latest sketchnotes of individual chapters are coming together:

I use highlighting and text size to help create hierarchy within these notes.

For each idea I try to come up with a helpful sketch or diagram to make it more memorable.

I’m always on the lookout for helpful visual metaphors – like a ladder – to serve as a container for a set of ideas.

So far I’m enjoying how two-stage highlighting (yellow while reading, then go back and change to blue the specific ideas I want to sketch out) is helping me to focus on capturing just the most important ideas from each chapter.

If you enjoy any aspect of my note-taking process, try applying it on the next book that you read!


Free Sketchnoting Guide

Want to give sketchnoting a try but not sure where to start? Check out this sample of The Verbal To Visual Notebook:

That 100% hand-sketched notebook includes a set of prompts to help you put pen to paper and start sketching out ideas yourself.

You can get the free guide here.

Good luck with your next book sketchnotes!