The clarity of thought, the magic of imagery, the power of words

03Feb10

Visual Storyteller is a blog dedicated to information graphics, the art and science of visual storytelling that has been a staple of newspapers, magazines, electronic and other media over the last three decades, but which has been downgraded and allowed to fade into the background as soon as the tough economics of traditional journalism in the last couple of years compelled newspapers and other media to downsize.

It is for information graphic artists and journalists, and all other variations of visual storytellers – the practitioners of the trade and purveyors of the craft, people who instinctively dig deep into the written word for a visual nugget that would elevate the story into the consciousness of the audience.

It is also for the consumer of visual information. And that includes everybody. The student studying a diagram on nuclear fission, the tourist enjoying the animations on an electronic board deep inside an ancient cave, or a subway passenger trying to make sense of the maze that is the city’s integrated subway system.

Our goal
Visual Storyteller will reassert the importance and relevance of information graphics in today’s rapidly changing, technology-driven information landscape. It will keep information graphics, in print, online and whatever platform, at the forefront of visual communications and reinforce the value of visual storytelling either in the practice of responsible, value-added journalism, or the simple taks of disseminating information to an audience hungry for knowledge.

Visual Storyteller will pick up where established news outlets –  that have woefully abandoned visual storytelling for fancy page layouts that design gurus promised would save newspapers; we all know how that turned out – left off. It will cover graphics-driven stories in a way established outlets would not do or could not do.

In the long term, the blog will aspire to become the authority on the subject of visual storytelling and information graphics.

How we will do it
We will post regularly articles on information graphics, mostly analytical and issue-based pieces that relate to the practice of information graphics and how the craft helps enhance the gathering, reporting effort and presentation of news.

Visual Storyteller will post real information graphics work – including, from time to tome, a work-in-progress graphic on a developing story, with an eye to updating the graphic as the story develops, and posting a comprehensive visual wrap-up package at the conclusion of the story.

We will cover a wide range of subjects, as wide as we can ever imagine it to be. Any story that can be told visually – a process, a procedure, a complex matrix, a puzzle, a crazy jumble of numbers – we intend to make sense of it  all and do the storytelling ourselves. A scientific development, a medical  breakthrough, a natural disaster,  a Brett Favre touchdown in a game’s dying seconds, the magic behind the iPad’s shiny touchscreen, the changing demographics of a major city, how welterweight boxing champion Manny Paquiao will break Floyd Mayweather’s overrated shoulder-roll defense– whatever it is, we want to tell its story … visually.

Did we miss something? Of course we did. Plenty of it. But the beauty of this exercise is it will be an evolving process, a process of discovery, a path to more professional execution.

Some of the graphics will be simple – as simple as they ought to be. But others will be more ambitious, more involved.

With the cooperation of information graphics and interactive graphics practitioners from all over the world, Visual Storyteller will post information graphics produced by these artists and designers. We  will critique select pieces and open a forum for discussion on these graphics, with emphasis on the value they add to the stories, how they advance the storytelling function and how they enrich the experience for the audience.

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Also in this blog:
B-Baker’s last bombing mission
Not a time for dictators
What animals mean when they ‘talk’
Shaping the Amazon
The war in Afghanistan

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3 Responses to “The clarity of thought, the magic of imagery, the power of words”

  1. I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.

  2. This is a great article, many thanks for sharing this informative details. I will check out your web site regularly for some most recent article.


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