Today I’m taking visual notes of Hamilton cast member Daveed Diggs’ interview on the WTF podcast with Marc Maron.
This time I’ve decided to give myself some constraints up front by creating columns that I will fill top-to-bottom, left-to-right.
I’ve also got some sticky notes and index cards on hand. Those will be helpful if I want to jot down some ideas to add later or do a rough draft of a sketch before committing it to the page.
As a long-time Hamilton fan I’m super excited to hear a long-form conversation with one of the original cast members.
Check out the video above for the skethchnotes I took alongside a few audio highlights of the podcast. (You can listen to the here.)
“Do the thing you love with the people you love.” – Daveed Diggs
I thought that would be a good place to pause the podcast and pause my notes.
One of the things I noticed in this conversation is how easy it is to get excited about the things you have in common with someone you admire.
In this case, that’s track and substitute teaching.
Like Diggs, I ran track in college and found a ton of value in the experience that sports provided, far past the time when I did it competitively.
I also was a substitute teacher while I was figuring out whether or not I wanted to jump into teaching full time. Instead I got pulled into the world sketchnoting – this world – and that’s the skill that I now teach.
But as fun as those points of connection are, it’s the differences that are just as if not more intriguing – Diggs’ experience growing up as a person of color in Oakland and having that early exposure to theater and spoken word.
As Maron points out in the full episode, when you look back on his life it’s not hard to see how Diggs was the perfect fit for Jefferson and Lafayette.
But the serendipity of what got him there struck me too, and how it came down to doing the thing that you love with the people you love. It sounds like he’s still doing that with his new movie, Blindspotting, which I can’t wait to see.
From a process perspective, I enjoyed having those gray-lined columns in place so that I didn’t have to think much about layout as I went.
Using gray made it easy to cross the lines when I needed to, either if a sketch got a bit too big or when I wanted to connect ideas from different parts of the conversation.
So if you like the idea of taking visual notes but don’t want to face an entirely blank page, you might try setting up this constraint yourself.
I hope that you enjoyed seeing these notes come together while listening to a few highlights from the podcast.
If you would like to dig deeper into the skill of sketchnoting, check out our course An Introduction to Visual Note-Taking:
You can also find other resources within our full course library.
I’ll be back again soon with more interesting ideas and conversations, shared visually.