For live workshops, some instructors use handouts and outlines, some use visual images or slide presentations, some just lecture. Either way, you'll need to pay attention to what matters to you and write notes about that. Don't try to transcribe the entire workshop word-for-word. That results in a distracted you and a lot of info you probably won't ever look at it again.
When you collect info about what matters to you, you'll walk away with customized solutions you'll use again and again.
Plan ahead for best results by answering these questions before you head out:
Low tech or high tech?
Use what works for you. Handwriting notes, photographic images, recordings, or notes taken on a computing device. Use what you are comfortable with, this is not a good time to struggle with new equipment and software.
How much do you want to schlepp?
If you're going to bring something other than pen and paper, what equipment do you currently have? Think about what else are you bringing (i.e. luggage, backpack, books, water bottle, snacks, etc.) Can you easily carry it all? How much walking will you be doing?
Got wi-fi, and power?
Will your equipment work at the workshop location? Call or email well ahead of time to find out if they have what you will need: wireless internet or electrical outlets available to participants.
If you're planning to take photos, make an audio or video recording of the workshop, make sure it's OK with the instructor. Same goes for publishing or sharing, best to check with the instructor before you publish those images, audio or video on a website or blog.
Have one. I've been to many workshops that promised electrical outlets and wi-fi that never materialized. Oops. A spiral notebook and pens (more than one) are a great Plan B. You can enter your notes into your computer later if you like. Yeah, it's a chore but it's also a great way to reinforce learning.
Also, read last week's tip on How To Get Your Money's Worth from Workshops. Aletta de Wal covers choosing classes and instructors and everything else you need to have fun and learn tons!
All my best to you and yours,
P.S. Want a bit of help on how to successfully run your art business? If you haven't already had one, you can request a free 15-minute conversation here. It's a great start!