This post reviews a new book, New York Bar Picture Book: A Visual Study Guide for the New York Bar Exam, by Wela Quan. Her great book provides an interesting, delightful look at a special type of hand drawn notes – doodles – used by its author to study, prepare, take, and pass the New York bar exam. Wela’s creative, visual art genius covers the bar prep waterfront in her great book.

What’s inside? From contracts to domestic relations to evidence to torts and wills and estates, along with all the other stuff in between, including professional conduct, this legal visual art masterpiece provides a great tool for the lawyer in limine who must clear that hurdle – the bar exam. The author’s webpage describes it like this – “New York Bar Picture Book is an illustrated large format visual study outline for the New York State Bar Exam. It covers 16 areas of law tested on the Uniform Bar Exam with 100 pages of notes and hand drawn cartoons.”

With a good table of contents and an exceptional subject index, Wela’s first-of-its-kind work of visual art should help its readers navigate the legal waterfront both before and after the bar exam. The author makes no guarantees, and provides a humorous three paragraph disclaimer. Those interested in learning more can tap into Wela’s story, former work as a corporate lawyer, humor, comics and art, heartfelt blog entries, contact information, and access book purchase information at New York Bar Picture Book. Refresh, behold, and enjoy.

Doodles and science? See Andrade, J. (2010). What does doodling do?. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 24(1), 100-106 (copy currently available here)(first experimental test of prediction that doodling improves concentration showed that doodling while working can improve concentration and improve memory recall). See also Courneya, C. A. (2012). Medical doodles: 30 minutes well spent. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 184(12), 1395-1396 (copy currently available here)(interesting essay about medical student who incorporates art-making into daily learning routine).

See related post on Psycholawlogy: Laptop vs. Longhand Note Taking, Shallow vs. Deep Processing, and Beneficial vs. Degraded Educational Performance: Caveats for Law Professors, Law Students, and Lawyers.

Thank You.  Thank you very much. Dan DeFoe JD MS – Adlitem Solutions | Organization Development for Professional Services Firms and the Legal Profession: People. Projects. Practices |Web – | Email: | Blog – | Services – Organization Development Practitioner combining and leveraging 25+ years of diverse legal experience, 7+ years of allied health training and work experience, a Master of Science in Organizational Development Psychology, and educationally qualified or earned certifications in industry-leading normal (Myers-Briggs MBTI) and special business (Hogan Assessments) personality; ability (MSCEIT) and self-report (EQi 2.0 [derived from Bar-On model]) emotional intelligence; leadership (Certified Intentional Leadership Coach); and stress management assessment and tools (ARSENAL best practices system for stress resilient emotional intelligence) to partner with client organizations, their leaders, and member to discover needs and opportunities for growth and to design, develop, deliver, and evaluate custom interventions for individual, team, project, or organizational solutions. | Mission:  “America’s leading resource for normal personality and emotional intelligence assessments, and related coaching, continuing education programs, training, and workshops for judges, lawyers, law schools, bar associations, healthcare, medical, and other professional services providers and their organizations and leaders.”  Please visit Adlitem Solutions and Psycholawlogy again soon. Thank you very much.

Complimentary Assessment: Contact me via email at to arrange a time for a no obligation discussion and assessment of your firm’s or firm members’ interests or needs regarding emotional intelligence workshops, training, continuing education, or coaching. See this related post at PsycholawlogyEmotional Intelligence Memo to Management: EI as a Buffer of [Lawyer] Stress in the Developmental Job Experience – for more information about taking first steps. Note: Emotional intelligence assessments do not constitute medical examinations and do not diagnose or treat alcoholism, alcohol abuse, or any other substance abuse or disorder.

Dan DeFoe

Owner and Lead consultant at Adlitem Solutions
I'm an attorney with 20+ years of experience and have an MS degree in organizational development psychology. I provide normal personality and emotional intelligence assessments, assessment interpretation and feedback, and professional development planning and training activities for lawyers, judges, other legal services providers, and their organizations.

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