One of the things that Mike Rohde advises in the Sketchnote Book is to try to grow a ‘visual vocabulary‘ – a collection of stuff you can draw fairly quickly[1]. This is mine.


Image credits

All of the images are drawn free-hand by myself, but some of them are my versions of of other people’s designs.

There may well be cases where I’ve forgotten that my image is a version of someone else’s, or I’ve absorbed a way of sketching something unconsciously, or just come up with the same way of sketching something. If so I apologize and will gladly credit and link, or remove the image. Email me at mattypenny at Where I’ve done a version of a corporate logo I’ve linked back too(or will do very soon).


24 Hours of PASS is a wonderful online SQL Server event run by the PASS organization – PASS > Home |

Sketchnote visual vocabulary - air bandb
Logo of Air BnB

BIML is Business Intelligence Markup Language. This is a rubbish version of theor logo, which can be found at BimlScript | Home

sketchnote-visual-vocabulary-dividers My version of some of the dividers in Mike Rohde’s book The Sketchnote Handbook
eat no meat A Peta T-Shirt design, as worn by Sir Paul McCartney. Their website is: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals | Animal Rights in the UK



The icons for Microsoft Sharepoint and Excel are my versions of Microsoft’s design

My version of Microsoft’s Firewall icon. It’s supposed to be a wall, representing the software, and the world, representing the world wide web….but it needs a bit of work.

Sketchnotes_visual_vocabulary_github Github’s cat thing is from the Github website.

hadoop The elephant is from Apache™ Hadoop®!. I’ve only ever been able to draw this if I’ve got Hadoop’s original in front of me.

The horror lettering is in the style of numerous horror movies and comics, and of my favourite band – the late, much lamented Cramps

My version of some of the icons in Mike Rohde’s book The Sketchnote Handbook

Json is from JSON

The ‘linked in’ logo is from LinkedIn

Tux, the Linux penguin was designed by Larry Ewing, who says that ‘Permission to use and/or modify this image is granted provided you acknowledge me and The GIMP if someone asks.’. His web-page for the bird is Linux 2.0 Penguins

The monkey is inspired by the much better one drawn by Cheryl Lowry

The Solarwinds logo is from: IT Management Software & Monitoring Tools l SolarWinds

The Sqlserver logo is from Microsoft’s design. I haven’t used it very often. It’s difficult to do quickly.

The Twiter bird is my version of Twitter’s logo

The Police Box is representative of the Tardis from BBC’s Dr Who

The Superman ‘S’ is a rendering of DC Comic’s Superman logo

The hadoop/Apache Storm logo is from:Apache Storm

sketchnote-visual-vocab-recycling The recycling logo was originally designed by a chap called Gary Anderson. See this article. I’ve not found it at all easy to draw.

Other people’s visual vocabs

Sketchnote building blocks + visual vocabulary | Cheryl Lowry

Sketchnotes: Building my visual vocabulary – sacha chua

Visual Elements by Pondd – Sketchnote Army – A Showcase of Sketchnotes

Visual Vocabulary |

Skizze Cartoon Objekte |