An Interview with CJ Mayes (2020 Tableau Public Featured & 2-Time VOTD Author)

Feature Interview

CJ Mayes Twitter | LinkedIn | Tableau Public | Site

It’s hard not to be passionate [in the Tableau community] when everyone else around you is.

I think Tableau Public in some way is a means of letting loose before taking the best bits and applying them into the workplace. (3)

  • Judit Bekker (Twitter | Tableau Public | Site) inspired my Kobe and mental health week vizzes, as well as many of the newer pieces as my portfolio grew. I rarely see anyone produce works of art like her. To be honest, her profile is a goldmine when it comes to inspiration. If you did a blind ‘who created this viz’ test, her dashboards would stick out like a sore thumb, they are so unique. Not sure what I would do if I couldn’t scroll through that and Pinterest.
  • Toan Hoang (Twitter | Tableau Public | Site) inspired the first few Premier League vizzes, with radial bar graphs, dendrograms and chords, I find his templates probably the easiest to follow. The sheer amount of content over at Tableau Magic is fantastic.
  • Kevin Flerlage (Twitter | Tableau Public | Site) and Ken Flerlage (Twitter | Tableau Public | Site) inspired Arc Sankeys, Bump chart variations, radar charts, sunbursts, you name it… all came from Kevin and Ken Flerlage. Without these two I think I’d have half a dashboard left. The beauty of their tutorials aren’t just that they show how to make something, but it often explains why as well as the do’s and don’ts, best practice and gives user case.
  • Don’t ignore the Viz of the Day! It displays such a wide range of topics, tools, details and skills.
  • Apply these to challenges… Makeover Monday, Workout Wednesday, and Sports Viz Sunday. Different challenges too, such as Iron Quest by Sarah Bartlett. The topics for this definitely may be my favourite. I regretfully have so many partial drafts for the challenges Sarah sets but it’s on a backlog of things to complete. Sarah was a huge inspiration to start my public work and was one of the first initiatives I took part in. Speaking of initiatives, check out viz2Educate & VizforSocialGood too, there are plenty of initiatives out there and they are all great way to kick-start your community work.
  • When your dashboard doesn’t come out the way you want it, it is a learning opportunity. I’ve learnt far more from the things I haven’t posted than the ones I have.
  • Find passion in whatever you are visualising; otherwise there is no point. For me it’s sports. For others, it may be social good, charity, world heath projects, geography, historical events, financial data, and etc. Whatever it is, find passion! Be yourself.
  • JR Copreros — I love JR’s ability to mix technical and design into one. A few of my favourites include his pastel-coloured vizzes Exonerations in America and The Influence of Racial Discrimination, as well as City and Colour: Income Inequality in Toronto. It’s got to the stage where I’m more surprised if JR’s vizzes don’t get a VOTD.
  • Francisco Cardoso — I was honoured to be in the same cohort of authors as Francisco. I really enjoyed his Benefits of working remotely piece and Apparel Imports. So elegantly presented.
  • Josh Hughes— Arsenal’s worst ever PL start was one of my favourites from the recent Makeover Monday. He has a clear flair for design.
  • Tamas VargaTamas using a lighter colour palette suited the ability to have a larger dataset. In general Tamas has a great eye for design.
  • Eve ThomasEve’s Grand Slam viz has the nice additional touch of not making it a full circle through amending the X & Y calculations. I also love what she did with adding the pie chart to the centre. The specific highlighted colour is a great touch.
  • Amar SinghAmar’s interpretation goes as far as including different generations which will have included slight amendments to the original dataset above what is explained in the blog post — so credit to him. I also like the use of lighter pastel colours.

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Adam Mico

Adam Mico

Principal, Data Visualization and CoE at Moderna | Data Leadership Collaborative Advisory Board Member | Tableau Visionary + Ambassador | Views are my own