***Please note videos will not play From cave walls to Facebook walls we have always embraced visual communication. Dual coding theory of cognition (Paivio, 1971), reiterates the importance of visual imagery in respect to our thinking processes - that in fact we need visual language in addition to verbal or text-based coding of stimuli. With the changing media landscape, our streams, memes, and zines have exploded with imagery, ushering in a need for visual literacy skills. We are quickly moving from images as decoration and augmentation to images as sole content and communication tool. We have some false beliefs about visual language - that it is equated with “art”, requiring “talent” from “creative types” - and therefore it is unfortunately often not overtly taught and practiced in schools. Technology has affected knowledge in such a way as to diminish the value of “raw” information and increase the value of sense-making, as well as chip away at attention spans, sparking a need for distillation of complex ideas. Images can essentialize the cumbersome in beautiful ways. They have a “stickiness” for the viewer and challenge the critical thinking of the creator. This hands-on session will explore the “Whys” of visual literacy and offer participants an opportunity to tinker and play with: iconography and metaphorical thinking pictograms, “Shortology”, emoji, meme stories, and gifs graphic design, graphic facilitation, infographics and sketchnotes photography, cinemagrams (moving photos) icon-based annotations and marginalia using images to leverage CVs, social media, and presentations We’ll experiment with ways to use visual language for personal knowledge management, amplification of knowledge and creative work, critical thinking, social interaction (conversation), and other forms of creative and intellectual expression.