Thanks to a comment, I borrowed from the library The back of the Napkin. Dan Roam, the author, emphasises the power of visual thinking through simple drawings. Beyond the book content, one thing that really got my attention was the used of Napkins to draw: ‘so I pulled a pen from my suit pocket and grabbed a stack of napkins from the table’.
This sentence remains me my years as a graphic design student, when I used to sit in corner-coffee shops and spent hours drawing and brainstorming, trying to solve design tasks. Related to this, Milton Glaser explains that drawing is a fundamental instrument of understanding. Drawing is a way of seeing and organising what it is in our minds. It is not about drawing a piece of art in each piece of paper or napkin; it is just a method for organising ideas and thoughts before moving on to designing itself.
As Roam has stated in his book, technology might be pretty useful sometimes, but, before, it is essential to have a clear idea of what to design, communicate, or visualise: ‘The reason we won’t need computer software or sophisticated data-plotting programs is because every picture we’re going to make will be composed of just a few simple pieces, all of which we should already be able to get down on paper’.
… the funny thing of napkins is that I keep drawing on them… maybe it can be considered as a (scientific? visual?) method after all.
This post is devoted to a special person who has been always supported me and shares the passion of doing coffee-brainstorming napkins…thanks! 🙂