sketch then create - storytelling with data
American painter John Singer Sargent intended this advice for artists working in traditional media like wood, paint, or charcoal. It also applies to data visualization practitioners. After all, we too are artists, simply working in a slightly different medium—information.
Whenever I’m unsure of how to display my data, I start sketching to generate ideas and gain clarity. I sit at my whiteboard or grab my tablet and draw a handful of charts that could work for my dataset—allowing myself to be curious and free from the constraints of my graphing tool.