Call for proposals (2016)

Proposal received!


Thanks to all the applicants for the outstanding proposals.  We are posting accepted speakers as quickly as we can, and will be opening registration soon, stay tuned!


This year’s theme is, what happens when we draw?


We invite creative thinkers of all stripes to submit a proposal to the first Sketching In Practice Symposium, to be held on June 24 2016, at, Simon Fraser University’s Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, in downtown Vancouver.


SKETCHING IN PRACTICE is a one-day symposium bringing together practitioners from a broad range of disciplines that think through drawing. While practice based disciplines, such as design, have long recognized the key role sketching plays in thinking of and communicating ideas, over the last few years there has been an explosion of interest in visual thinking from diverse fields, including education, anthropology, engineering, geography, literature, and the biosciences. In this experiential, full day gathering, practitioners will explore the fundamental question, what happens when we draw?  Participants can expect to learn and share ways of working, thinking, tools and techniques and will have the opportunity to work collaboratively.

Session topics may include:

  • Drawing to see. The use of drawing in unique fields to highlight information and/or knowing that is unobtainable through other means of documentation.
  • Drawing to communicate. The use of drawing in unique fields to communicate information and/or knowing that is unobtainable through other means.
  • The reemergence of drawing in disciplines such as design and anthropology.
  • Work that explores the dual role of words and images to express ideas, experiences and knowledge.
  • The experimental use of drawing to express the range of human experience.


You may submit proposals for one the following types of sessions: workshop, dialogue/roundtable, presentation, display, or other delivery format of your choice. Preference will be given to proposals that are interactive and/or demonstrate unique ways of engaging audience with the topic being presented. All attendees are encouraged to bring their sketchbooks to share.

Workshops (20, 45 or 75 min.) should be action-oriented and allow for the audience to learn, practice or engage with material. These may include a short presentation of research or ways of working, illustration of theories, or show-and-tell of tools and practices. These should include activities for attendees to participate in.

Dialogue/roundtable sessions (20 or 45 min.) should, once the facilitator introduces the issues and lays out expectations, see participants engaged in either small working groups, allow for sharing of materials or techniques or facilitate dialogue aimed at providing practical strategies to deal with these issues.

Presentation sessions (20, 45 or 75 min.) allow for the sharing of the growing amount of scholarship, research and projects around drawing and visual literacy that are emerging. If abstracts are expanded into full papers, they will be peer reviewed by Sketching In Practice committee and considered for publication on website.

Poster/ Exhibit display (half-day) for hands on interactive demos of new technology, techniques and displays that are more suitable to be experienced.

Other delivery format of your choice (20, 45 or 75 min.) should be content driven. Presentation format should enhance the audience understanding or engagement with material presented.

Presentation and Multimedia Equipment

We will provide a video projection system as well as a audio system for use by presenters at the venue. You will be expected to provide a laptop if required for your presentation. Please let us know in advance if you will require a laptop provided for your use. We will also provide drawing paper and materials for all participants and presenters. Additional equipment required for presentations and demonstrations should be supplied by the presenters. Contact the symposium director at to discuss any special equipment and setup needs/concerns.


It is expected that at least one author of each accepted submission will attend the workshop to present their contribution. We also welcome those who would like to attend the workshop without presenting. Workshop registration will be available through the starting May 02 2016. All presenters must be registered to present.

Review criteria

The symposium program committee will review all submissions. Assessment criteria are available below to guide the development of your proposal. We may approach applicants to request changes to their proposals to better fit Symposium needs.

  • Clarity and coherence of submission
  • Relevance to the theme
  • Relevance to the intended audience

Email any questions or comments to