Younito Man

David Blumenstein

Service Designer | Cartoonist | Writer

How are you doing now?

We were fine at our place — some cabin fever and some dread about what happens next for us professionally, when wed feel it would be OK to send our daughter back to kinder, etc. But generally all right.

I’m concerned for people with pre-existing conditions that might be badly affected by the virus, and frustrated by poor comms (by the government) on the problem, and the reactions of libertarian/right-wing types to what’s happening (which were predictable).

How has your work changed?

Nothing has really changed yet, but the economic slowdown is yet to hit. The GFC kicked off in 2008 but affected the next couple of years’ worth of projects and led to lean times. Ultimately it forced me to think harder about my career and what I wanted to be doing, so there was a tiny bit of good to be found in it as well.

In the short term, I am doing work right now that’s directly related to COVID — because clients I already had have come back to me for help in explaining what’s happening visually.

I’m not sold on “remote scribing” as something super useful to clients, but using those scribes as the basis for more finished material that does help them will be good.

Also, I’m not sure if the timing is just coincidental, but I have a few book projects which are maybe moving forward slightly right now. Fingers crossed.

Is visualisation helping you personally in any way during this challenging time?

 Well, I think in pictures, so yes. My wife (also a cartoonist) and I are looking at now as the time to do some whiteboard plotting to work out how we’re going to keep our careers alive for the next few years, and hopefully aim for more and more interesting work and clients as we do. We did this a few years ago and it led me into HCD/service design.

And this time we’ll be using some HCD tools as well, which are often also nice and visual. Things like ‘Desirable/Viable/Feasible’.

I’m trying to narrow down my projects and be smart about how I spend my time — so more prep/research/writing right now, but if one of these projects is picked up (eg: by a publisher) I’ll suddenly be doing lots of drawing!

Thank you, for sharing, David. 

You can connect with David on LinkedIn, follow him on socials or enquire about the courses he runs like Drawing for Story and Narrative Visualisation for Designers. All the details are on his website.


David Blumenstein created this to help explain the COVID-19 disease in his local area (Melbourne, Aus). It’s adapted from government health info (Department of Health, 16 Mar 2020). If you think it would help you, you’re welcome to use it; download A4, poster and socmed versions here.

Medical knowledge and government policy on this disease changes daily; please don’t make use of this if it’s out of date (note the date of publication at top). he’ll try to keep it up to date if possible, and make edits to this post to indicate so.

The article was written by Natalia Tsygankova. Natalia has always loved words and talking to people. She has put that passion to good use and has been sharing people’s stories in the community radio, TV and print media for the last 10 years. Natalia is also a big fan of true storytelling events and regularly volunteers at the most famous one – The Moth, interviewing the winner. You can hear her own story of moving to Australia from Russia in 1999 here. Natalia believes that everyone has a story – So what’s yours? Contact her today to share your story.

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