Stefanie Posavec
Dataviz Drawing Class

A hand-drawn approach to creating custom data visualisations

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.


One-day training course


In Cologne
3 minutes
from Cologne Central,
15 minutes
from Cologne/Bonn Airport,
50 minutes
from Frankfurt Airport


Conducted and designed
by author and data visualization pioneer
Stefanie Posavec
from the UK


May 28th, 2019,
€450 (+German VAT)

  • Agenda

    The first half of the workshop will be a mix of lectures introducing data visualisation basics combined with fast-paced creative exercises where participants work individually to sketch data using black charcoal. After lunch, using a shared class dataset, attendees will work individually or in pairs to create a custom visualisation method and then draw their final visualisation.

    Topics covered in the workshop include:

    • 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 for designers
    • The custom data visualisation design process
    • 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
    • Learn strategies for integrating off-screen, hand-drawn idea generation methods into their data visualisation process, whatever the application

  • Trainer

    Stefanie Posavec is a London-based designer, artist, and author for whom data is her favoured material, with projects ranging from data visualization, book design, and information design to commissioned artworks. Her art practice focuses on non-traditional representations of data derived from language, literature, or scientific topics, often using a hand-crafted, hand-drawn approach.

    This work has been exhibited internationally at major galleries including MoMA (New York), CCBB (Rio de Janeiro), the Centre Pompidou (Paris), the V&A, the Design Museum, the Science Museum, and Somerset House (London). She was Facebook’s first data-artist-in-residence at their Menlo Park campus, and more recently was the data-artist-in-residence at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, London.

    She recently completed a year-long drawing project with Giorgia Lupi 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 (Dear Data) is published by Particular Books (Penguin UK) and Princeton Architectural Press (USA). Their new book, Observe, Collect, Draw! is also published by Princeton. The 104 postcards and sketchbooks that form the project are held in the permanent collection of MoMA, New York.

    Instagram / Twitter: @stefpos • •

  • Target group & requirements

    Who this course is for: This workshop is for someone who would like to learn to learn off-screen, hand-drawn approaches to designing custom data visualisation methods to be incorporated into any professional practice, ranging from graphic facilitators and designers to data scientists and data visualisation engineers … this workshop focuses on teaching core visualisation principles and visualisation ideation strategies that can be applied to a variety of specialisms.

    Skills and experience needed: A (very) basic understanding of what data and data visualisation is and how it can be used/applied and very basic spreadsheet skills (if you know how to read numbers in a table, that’s all you need!)

  • Additional services

    Documentation: Following the training, we will provide digital photo documentation with all the input from the trainers and the results of the group.

    Slides handout: You will also receive a digital handout of the slides from the day’s workshop

    Book: All participants will receive a copy of the Dear Data book or, if they already have this title, a copy of the new Dear Data journal: Observe, Collect, Draw!

    Neuland discount: Our partner Neuland guarantees participants of our training sessions in Germany a discount on products from their entire range (excl. books; cannot be used in combination with other offers or discounts).

  • Information at a glance

    Price: €450 (+German VAT), including material costs, food and beverages (lunch and breaks)

    Location: Tor28, Machabäerstr. 28, Cologne (3 minutes from Cologne Central Station, 15 minutes by train from Köln/Bonn Airport, 50 minutes from Frankfurt Airport). 

    Trainers: Stefanie Posavec

    Group: max. 20 participants

    Course times: 9.30 am – 5.00 pm with breaks and lunch

    Registration: Easy and convenient online registration, using our ticketing partner XingEvents. You can pay by credit card, direct debit, invoice, prepayment, or PayPal

    Rights of use: The training concept, methods, and contents are subject to copyright law

    You can find our Terms and Conditions here


  • MasterClass • Stefanie Posavec | 28.05.2019 - 28.05.2019 | Tor28, Cologne, Germany

    Seminar - mit der Ticketing-Lösung von XING Events