Timely Tempo


A quick gesture drawing

As I learned the vocabulary of drawing I realized that most of my drawings were detailed studies where I attempted to record every last detail. I decided to switch to gesture drawings – quick sketches whose only intent is to get the spirit of the pose. After some time of these I opted for a long study, and I was surprised at how much better I had become. Gesture drawings forced me to identify and record the key details quickly, and long studies gave me time to identify and record a multitude of details. Practicing each brought improvements in the other.

As I learned the vocabulary of testing I realized that most of my tests were studied attacks on my applications where I attempted to identify every last defect. I decided to switch to short timeboxed test sessions, where I invented my test cases on the fly. After some time of these I opted for a time of involved prethought, and I was surprised at how many more issues I found. Rapid-fire testing forced me to think quickly, and long planning sessions gave me time to look for holes I might have missed. Practicing each brought improvements in the other.

Vary the speed and the level of detail at which you work, and each will bring improvements in the other.

[See all my art at http://www.freelyoffered.com.]


*** Want a fun job on a great team? I need a tester! Interested? Let’s talk: Michael dot J dot Hunter at microsoft dot com. Great testing and coding skills required.

Comments (2)

  1. Adam White says:

    Michael,

    Drawing is a great way to work on testing skills. Have you seen the book "Drawing on The Right Side of the Brain" by Betty Edwards?

    It is a great book on drawing. She goes into how the brain works when drawing. The quotes and side bars are extremely fun and applicable both to drawing and testing. You might find lots of valuable information in there.

  2. micahel says:

    Adam: Yes, I like Betty’s book. I also like Nikolaides’ "The Natural Way To Draw". If my junior high school art classes had taught art the way these books do, I might have discovered how much fun drawing can be many years sooner!