Breathing Life into Presentations: The Art and Impact of Sketchnoting

Have you ever found yourself absent-mindedly doodling in the corner of your notes during a meeting or a class? You might be on to something more productive than you think! We had the pleasure of inviting Ashton Rodenhiser, a professional doodler and sketchnoter, onto our show. This episode embraces the underestimated power of doodling and its impact on enhancing memory retention. Ashton sheds light on how sketch noting can simplify and focus your thoughts on the vital points, rather than struggling to include every detail.

Find Ashton Rodenhiser’s book on Sketchnoting at

Ashton’s journey from being a stay-at-home mom to a professional doodler is sure to inspire. Drawing from a decade’s worth of experience working with presenters, she emphasizes the crucial role of listening and adjusting to the flow of the conversation. She shares her adventures of choreographing presentations, leaving room for magic and unexpected moments that make the material more exciting and engaging.

Ashton’s story doesn’t stop at doodling. She talks about work-life balance and his journey throughout the pandemic. She used this challenging time as a stepping stone to rebuild his business. Tune in for a conversation filled with creativity, entrepreneurship, and inspiration to add a touch of doodling, and perhaps, a dash of play to your daily life.

(0:00:16) – The Power of Doodling and Drawing (12 Minutes)

Ashton Rodenhiser, a professional doodler and sketchnoter, chats about the power of doodling and drawing. We explore how doodling has been given a bad rap, but can actually be a very effective way to help you think and learn. We also discuss how doodling can help you retain up to 29% more information. Ashton shares tips on how to start sketch noting, and how it can help with memory retention. Finally, we discuss how with sketch noting, you don’t need to capture everything, but can instead focus on the key points.

(0:12:08) – The Challenges of Presenting With PowerPoint (5 Minutes)

Ashton Rodenhiser shares her decade-long experience of working with over 2,500 presenters and how she has learned to adjust to the flow of conversation. Listening is an important skill for professional doodlers or sketchnoters, as it can be difficult to keep up with a presenter’s talk, especially if they are famous and have a lot of knowledge to share. It’s okay to not always have the best drawings, and creating choreographed presentations with the presenter can help to have a better understanding of the material.

(0:17:26) – The Journey to Creativity and Entrepreneurship (9 Minutes)

Ashton explains her journey towards becoming a professional doodler and sketchnoter. She talks about leaving room for the “magic” in his presentations, which she believes is essential for creating a captivating experience. Ashton emphasizes the importance of leaving room for the unexpected and being okay with mistakes in order to make something interesting. She reflects on his past as a black sheep in her family and shares how she went from wanting to be a stay-at-home mom to becoming a facilitator and trainer.

(0:26:31) – Impactful Choices in Work and Life (9 Minutes)

Ashton speaks about her journey towards finding balance in his work and life. The pandemic was a blessing in disguise, as it allowed her to rebuild her business and work more flexibly. She has learned to lean into his intuition and trust that his work will pay off over time. Ashton Rodenhiser also shares her experience by playing Two Truths and a Lie.