Back to All Events

Data visualisation workshop - Dear Data

  • GreenBizz.Brussels 17 Dieudonné Lefèvrestraat Brussel, Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest, 1020 Belgium (map)
Eventbrite - Data visualisation workshop - Dear Data

Dear Data - Data Visualisation Workshop


Data is the raw material from which a range of outputs such as data visualisation, information graphics, and data-driven artworks are created. However, this material is often dealt with digitally and rarely engaged with in a tangible, physical way. How would your approach and sensibility within a data project change if you started by working with charcoal and paper instead of code and screens?

For this workshop, data is our model on the plinth, and we'll explore ways of using traditional methods and materials as a starting point for creating data-driven visual systems by taking techniques from the world of art and design and applying them to data.

We'll think about the creation of a visualisation system through using a handmade design process, exploring variability in mark-making and material as a way to communicate information.

By the end of this workshop, you'll both better understand the data visualisation design process and also have access to a different starting process for working with data and shaping its aesthetic (even if you move onto your computer / into code at a later point!)

The entire workshop will be off-screen, using nothing more than basic drawing materials.


AM: A mix of lectures and fast-paced creative exercises where participants work with charcoal to sketch data.

PM: Using a shared class dataset, attendees work in pairs or small groups to create a custom visualisation method and then draw their final visualisation.


  • Why draw data? Why not use software and code?

  • Introduction to rule-based drawing as approach to creating a data visualisation

  • Data-drawing ‘Bootcamp’ (Intensive drawing session merging traditional drawing exercises with data to build creative confidence and push experimentation).

  • Basic data analysis as part of the design process

  • Applying a creative approach to data visualisation

  • How to determine the architecture of your data-drawing

  • Anatomy of a data visualisation

By the end of the workshop, the attendees will:

  • Create a unique visual system to visualise a dataset

  • Approach data visualisation from a different angle through using drawing techniques normally used in art/design school

  • Integrate off-screen methods into their data visualisation process, whatever the application

Who is this course for:

A person who understands the basic principles and functions of data visualisation (and may use data visualisation regularly in their day job) but would like to learn off-screen approaches to designing custom visualisation methods.

Skills and experience needed:

  • a (very) basic understanding of what data and data visualisation is and how it can be used/applied

  • basic spreadsheet skills

About the trainer

Stefanie Posavec is a designer and artist (and author, speaker, and lecturer) for whom data is her favoured material, with projects ranging from data visualization, book design, and information design to commissioned data art. This work has been exhibited internationally at major galleries including MoMA (New York), CCBB (Rio de Janeiro), the Science Gallery (Dublin), the Centre Pompidou (Paris), the V&A, the Design Museum, the Science Museum, The Southbank Centre, and Somerset House (London).

She recently completed a year-long drawing project with Giorgia Lupi (based in NYC) called Dear Data, where each week they gathered and drew their data on a postcard to send to the other. This project was nominated for the London Design Museum’s illustrious ‘Designs of the Year 2016’ exhibition, and a book of this project is published by Penguin Random House UK. Their newest book Observe, Collect, Draw! is published by Princeton Architectural Press. The 104 postcards and sketchbooks that form the project are held in the permanent collection of MoMA, New York.

Earlier Event: February 22
Become a Flipchart Ninja! Training
Later Event: March 22
Become a Flipchart Ninja! Training