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About crooked lines and spelling punctuation

About crooked lines and spelling punctuation
The following use cases refer to working with pens and paper. However, those who take notes and draw digitally will also find tips at the end for dealing with blunders on the graphics tablet.

Numerical errors, spelling mistakes and grammar,

If you write quickly and in front of an audience, sooner or later you will capture a word or two in a way that doesn't quite comply with the Duden dictionary. Especially if you record events that are not held in your native language or (the classic) if you concentrate so much on making the letters beautiful that you completely forget to pay attention to what you are writing in the first place. Don't despair, there are many options to approach the Duden again:

  • Strikethrough
    If I have to do it really quickly, I simply cross out the relevant passage and write the correct spelling above it. This makes sense when the process (brainstorming, for example) is more important than the finished image.
  • Humor
    Depending on the topic and the target audience, a humorous approach to the prescriber is an opportunity to lighten the mood. More often than you might think, it's more about social interaction and good-vibes than the perfect score. With a little note of "Oops!" next to the spot or a pretty flower or cloud covering the mistake, a correction can be made in these situations to show that making mistakes is okay and part of the process. Sometimes this lesson is more valuable to the group than perfect spelling skills.
  • Tipp-ex Roller
    'd rather correct the error so that it is no longer visible? If the area to be corrected is not too large, correcting with a Tipp-ex Roller is a good solution.
  • Paper strips and adhesive roller
    the spot is larger, it is best to cut a piece of paper (preferably the same paper that you use for drawing) in the appropriate size and paste over the failed letters.

Crooked lines

What if the "mistake" is not with the text but with images or frames? Well, the big difference here is that (unlike writing) there is no objective right and wrong in drawing. Therefore, I would also approach these situations differently:

  • Courage to leave gaps
    If you find gaps when drawing frames or lines, the best thing you can do is just leave them as they are. Correcting them afterwards only draws more attention to the spot and usually doesn't make the image better (but just the opposite).
  • Crooked lines
    It's also best to leave lines that didn't turn out quite straight just as they are. Keep in mind what you want to do differently next time. But don't make too many corrections to the existing image. It's like a cake: once it's baked, it won't get better if you add butter or sugar. But: adapt the recipe for next time.
  • Grids, line mirrors and templates
    Precaution is a good idea, as we all know. If you want to make it easier for yourself when designing, you are well advised to use a line mirror or a grid as a basis. Simply place the sheet with the template under the sheet you want to work on and trace the lines. Most of the time you can't see these templates from a distance. In other words, your group will most likely not even notice it. I still like to show my templates deliberately, so that others can use the trick for themselves.


One problem that participants in flipchart seminars regularly complain about is the space allocation on the large sheet. Texts sometimes don't quite fit on the line where they should. What do you do in such cases?

  • Planning
    Again, grids and line mirrors are a good remedy. Think in advance about how much content you have and how you want to place it. Then the layout will be much easier.
  • Hyphen
    If a word no longer fits in a line, it is better to separate it with a hyphen and continue writing in the next line than to try to squeeze it in somehow or to bend the line down at the end of the page.
  • New sheet
    If you run out of space on one sheet, take a new sheet. This may sound simple and easy, but in the heat of visualizing, this simple solution is unfortunately often forgotten.
  • Narrower / wider writing
    An elegant way to make good use of the space you have available is to vary the width of your letters. Do you have little space? Write your book letters a little narrower. Do you want to fill a banner and have started writing too far to the left? Make the letters wider.

More awfulness

Spotted Devil

I don't know about you, but I leave longer sessions at the flipchart with surprising reliability with colorful hands and one or the other splash of color on my robe. If you feel the same way, here's my recommendation: wear black :) because you won't see the stains on black clothing. The color on the hands can be removed relatively well with soap and a sponge (except red for some reason - that's very stubborn. And of course also genu the paint, which in rough quantities on the hands quite irritating to the Mitfahrer:innen in the streetcar on the way home).


The tip that I would like to recommend to you because it is the one that I personally have the hardest time with: always remember that it doesn't have to be perfect. Cut yourself some slack. And when you've learned how to do that best, come and tell me about it.

Digital work

When working digitally, it is very quick and easy to delete lines and correct texts. You don't need Tipp-ex or paper strips for the correction. Often a simple click on the "Undo" button is enough.

The tricky thing is that exactly this "simplicity" is very tempting and you sometimes want to correct things much more often than necessary. My tip is to correct only what is necessary. Not every line has to look as if it was drawn with a ruler.

What do we take with us?

The more options you have in your toolbox to react to a situation, the more calmly and flexibly you can face the challenges. I hope I was able to add one or two tools to your toolbox.

Do you know what the biggest difference is between master:in and disciple:in? The number of mistakes of the master far exceeds the number of attempts of the disciple. In this sense: dare to fail. With every mistake you learn and become better.

Do you have any other examples of things that don't go according to plan? Or questions about tricky situations when visualizing? Write me and we can add to the list :)

Online course Designing flipcharts Summary