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The Power of Infographics

Two Days of Data Visualization and Storytelling with Juan Velasco from 5W (former Art Director of National Geographic and The New York Times)
Date: September 29–30, 2014
Time: 10:00–19:00
Location: Gestalten Space, Sophie-Gips-Höfe, Sophienstraße 21, 10178 Berlin
Language: English
Limited to 20 participants
Participation Fee:


This fall, Juan Velasco, founder and Creative Director of 5W Infographics, will be joining Gestalten to host a workshop on the Power of Infographics. Juan Velasco was the Art Director of National Geographic magazine from 2008 to 2014, and previous to National Geographic, he worked as the Graphics Art Director for The New York Times.

The two-day workshop will provide the foundation to understand the role of visual storytelling with infographics and the process of creating them. We will learn about gathering and preparing data, working with numerical information to create charts, sketching and storyboarding, and the role of illustration in graphics. Participants will also learn about design applied to infographics: using hierarchy, color, typography, and narrative order.

The class will include an overview of the tools and strategies involved in creating engaging animated and interactive graphics for mobile devices and the web. Multiple award-winning projects from National Geographic magazine will be discussed and explained.

By the end of this course you will be able to:
- Understand the role of infographics and data visualization in visual storytelling.
- Exercise judgment regarding sources of information, types of data and deciding how to present them visually by choosing the right form in clear and accurate charts.
- Conceptualize, sketch, and design engaging infographics with multiple elements, including charts, maps and illustration.
- Edit text for graphics and make choices on final presentation.
- Storyboard interactive graphics and learn the fundamentals of producing animated and interactive graphics.
- Learn about the professional tools used to create infographics on print and online and about the resources available to expand your knowledge.

This course is a two-day practical guide for working journalists, designers and students interested in developing the skills to create print and interactive information graphics. The workshop will include theory as well as practical exercises.

Required: Laptop computer with Adobe Illustrator, Microsoft Excel and a free text editor such as Sublime Text 2. As course prerequisite, participants must have a working knowledge of Adobe Illustrator. 


About the host

Juan Velasco

Juan Velasco was the Art Director of National Geographic magazine from 2008 to 2014. Previous to National Geographic, he worked as a graphics artist for El Mundo (Spain) and as the Graphics Art Director for The New York Times.

In 2001, he founded his own consulting company, 5W Infographics, which is based in New York City and Madrid. Juan has won over a hundred Society of News Design and Malofiej awards (including the Best of Show Award in 2013), as well as awards from the Society of Publication Design and the American Institute of Graphic Arts. He was also a Pulitzer Prize finalist as part of a team of writers and visual journalists of The New York Times.

As a consultant, Juan does workshops and graphics stylebooks and has helped restructure graphics departments around the world, including Le Monde (France) and many others. Since 2001 he has been an instructor for the “Show, Don’t Tell” data visualization workshop, at the leading Malofiej conference.

Juan Velasco's work has been featured in several Gestalten publications including Around the WorldA Life in Illustrationand Data Flow 2.  

Gestalten Space

Sophienstraße 21
10178 Berlin
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Opening Hours
Monday–Saturday 12:00–19:00 

+49 (0)30 20 21 58 21

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