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20 galleries in 20 weeks

Building another 100-day habit:


  • Review 1 Storytelling With Data challenge gallery per week.
  • Pick 1 submission per weekday and tweet its link. Identify:
    • 1 effective / theft-worthy feature
    • 1 idea for improvement
    • A takeaway title
  • Stick to time budget of 15–30 minutes per day, before 10:30 PM Eastern


  1. Critiquing models—for both strengths and weaknesses—is one of my most effective learning habits: in writing, teaching writing, UI design… so why not also dataviz unto data stories?
  2. I will learn more by practicing this habit frequently.
  3. Continuing this habit over 20 weeks will build a nice collection of 100+ models that I can revisit in future.
  4. Building this collection on Twitter will force me to be pithy while turning that account to good use (given that I prefer personal communication but see the value of making work visible online).
  5. Sticking to clear time limits will help me prioritize (get to the point faster!).


Each Saturday, write a mini-recap in my wrex (30–45 minutes). Flexible week to week:

  • Pick 5 ahead of time or as I go?
  • Include 0, 1, or 2 additional selections in my mini-recap?
  • Read recap by SWD team before, during, after, or not at all?
  • Take an extra 1–3 hours and try the challenge myself?


SWD currently has 39 challenges online, 1 per month from January 2018 onward. The next 20 weeks will add another 5, for April through August. Here are my top 5+5 of current interest:

mobileadapt a chart or dashboard created for monitor202019 Aug
tablesdesign a table that fits its purpose & content well572020 Sep
mapsidentify data that lends itself well to a map582021 Mar
b&wmake an effective monochromatic communication402020 Jun
bars & linesplot both together in a way that makes sense482019 Nov
# refers to total submissions (minus recap)
explain a change362020 Nov
small multiples742020 Jan
annotated line882018 Jan!
visualize uncertainty362019 Sep
rebrand it!582019 Jun


Grouped in 4 clusters of 5 weeks.

Pick a small reward for each 25-day milestone! Worked well with my CollectUI-browsing habit in 2019/2020 (e.g. buy an ebook I’ve wanted).

#01 [ok]28293031123APRIL
1st milestone: May 1st
2nd milestone: June 5th
3rd milestone: July 10th
4th & final milestone: August 14th


Updated 2021 April, May, June, July 2 … Current total: 43 challenges.

Grouped by prompt category (my headings): message type (5), viz type (16), remake (8), other constraint (10), and expand horizons (4).

In reverse chronological order per category. Counts per gallery (#) are hyperlinked to recap by SWD team. Asterisks mark my initial top 10.

MESSAGE TYPE (5 challenges)

Apr 2021ask & answer39
Jan 2021visualize your resume55
Nov 2020*explain the change36
Sep 2019*visualize uncertainty36
Feb 2019visualize variability40

VIZ TYPE (16 challenges)

Jul 2021exploring unit charts_
Mar 2021*March MAPness58
Sep 2020*build a table57
Aug 2020make a perfect pie72
Apr 2020area graphs61
Feb 2020back to basics with bars89
Jan 2020*small multiples74
Nov 2019*bars AND lines48
Jul 2019radial data viz59
Oct 2018scatterplot!47
Aug 2018let’s plot with a dot!52
Jun 2018slopegraph72
May 2018the waterfall chart45
Apr 2018square area graph78
Mar 2018basic bars85
Jan 2018*annotated line graph88

REMAKE (8 challenges)

May 2021how we’ve grown30
Dec 2020critique then (re)create67
Oct 2019improve this table82
Aug 2019*redesign for mobile20
Jun 2019*rebrand it!58
Apr 2019emulate!54
Sep 2018how would YOU makeover this graph?96
Jul 2018your choice makeover45

OTHER CONSTRAINT (10 challenges)

Jun 2021reading into red45
Feb 2021draw your data42
Jun 2020*it’s all there in black and white40
May 2020think like a designer29
Mar 2020get animated!46
May 2019artisanal data57
Mar 2019visualize THIS data!69
Dec 2018happy holidays!42
Nov 2018sticky notes20
Feb 2018education, color, and words45

EXPAND HORIZONS (4 challenges)

Oct 2020face your fear: xenographphobia40
Jul 2020diagram it!36
Dec 2019infographics28
Jan 2019new year, new tool36