News veterans share visual storytelling tips

Mr Ken Jalleh Jr said the workshop aims to arm and inspire participants to see that there is more than one way to communicate with their audience.
Mr Ken Jalleh Jr said the workshop aims to arm and inspire participants to see that there is more than one way to communicate with their audience. PHOTO: AZIZ HUSSIN FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

Use listicles to draw in readers, infographics to present information, and be concise.

These were some of the pointers dished out at a full-day ST Skills workshop on Visual Storytelling For The Digital Age yesterday.

The session, the first in a series of professional development courses organised by The Straits Times in collaboration with ST Jobs, was attended by 30 people and taught by two newsroom veterans - Mr Ken Jalleh Jr, founding editor of The New Paper on Sunday and Streats, and Mr Lee Hup Kheng, an award-winning visual journalist.

Yesterday, participants were taught the creative process and how to appeal to audiences, given the rise of social media, citizen journalism and viral videos.

"We want to arm and inspire the participants so they see that there is more than one way to communicate. The turnout indicates that people realise the importance of visuals in this age," Mr Jalleh said.

He and Mr Lee have more than 25 years of experience in journalism each. The opportunity to learn from experienced media professionals was one of the reasons the participants signed up.

Ms Sadia Roohi, who is in her 40s and had read about the course in The Straits Times, wanted to learn to improve the alumni publications she works on for Nanyang Technological University. "I haven't found many courses on this because it is quite niche, and I feel that the trainers, being journalists, are very credible," she said.

The lessons were not just theory. Participants learnt how the written word can be paired with design by creating infographics.

Mr Mun Siong Yoong, 43, hopes to use what he learnt to present technical information more concisely and clearly. "I think a picture can speak 100,000 words," he said.

A second run of the course, which aims to equip professionals in media, marketing and other industries with better communication skills, will be held on April 28. The course costs $589, with an early-bird price of $489 until April 18. Registration is open at http://learning.stjobs.sg until April 25. Other courses on op-ed writing, feature writing, media relations and digital media are also in the pipeline.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 10, 2017, with the headline 'News veterans share visual storytelling tips'. Print Edition | Subscribe