I love history and I’m a sucker for vintage, but anytime a company talks about being around for 100 years, they manage to make it seem stogy. Not so with Dodge. As Dodge turns 100, the company rolled out the Dodge/Born 1914 campaign which is features some commercials that bring out the fun in 100.
This one, the “Legend of the Dodge Brothers” reminds us that the past 100 years have been anything but dull and that the future looks even better.
Here’s another one that shows us what we can learn from someone who is 100.
Photography tip: shoot high or shoot low, but don’t shoot for average!
Often one of the best things you can do to get a good photo is to get your knees dirty. This is shot of a cheap resin cherub sculpture that sits beside my steps. It has some dirt clinging to it, but that actually makes it look more stone-like than when it was pure white. The sun was casting some neat shadows the day I shot this, but it wasn’t until I knelt on the sidewalk and shot upwards that I liked the way the shadows fell on his face. I got in really tight so that his face filed up most of the frame.
Following the Fox: Georgetown Snap Cafe
A red fox wearing glasses introduced us to bubble tea a few weekends ago at the Georgetown Snap Cafe. My husband and I had been walking in the heat for a couple of hours when we spotted this fox prancing across the top of sidewalk sign pointing the way to Snap, “Georgetown’s cutest cafe.” This fox promised us mouthwatering refreshments, including “Bubbletea.” We had no idea what bubble tea was, but I’m a sucker for a good animal mascot so we followed the fox down the alley way to his storefront.
Bubble Tea. Try it. You’ll like it.
Feeling uncharacteristically adventurous, and incredibly thirsty, we ordered some bubble tea. I tried the coconut. Weird and wonderful! The bottom of the glass was filled with what looked like blueberries, but were in reality big, gummy black tapioca pearls.
Why “Fish Eye” Tapioca Rules.
I LOVE large pearl tapioca. When I was a little girl I would affectionately ask for the pudding with the “fish eyes” when I wanted my grandmother to make tapioca pudding. I just never considered drinking them. Once I got over the fear that I was going to choke to death on one as I sucked it through the jumbo straw, I started to really enjoy the concoction. It was kind of like drinking a runny batch of tapioca pudding.
Now as for the fox’s claim that Snap was the cutest cafe in Georgetown, that was a little bit of a fable. It had cute potential for sure, but it needed to have a good, deep cleaning. I was also a little sad that the hip little red fox that helped us find Snap didn’t play a more prominent role once we arrived at the establishment. We did like the bubble tea enough to walk back later that evening for a second round. Thank you mister fox for showing us something new!
I live in Hollidaysburg, Pa., a quaint historic town with a “Tree City U.S.A” designation. It isn’t exactly known for its gritty photo shoot locales, but if you venture a few blocks off the town center, you will find an old carriage house that has been transformed into a garage and a hang-out for graffiti artists.
This old structure made a great setting for the class I just took with photographer Marlaina Pacifico Wills of Grin Gallery Photography. Shooting in the dark space challenged me immensely.
And just to make the setting a little more interesting, Marliana set off smoke bombs.
More photography stuff: Photography: Improving Your Suck to Good Ratio
I find that in pretty much everything I do there is a “suck to good” ratio in play. When I’m learning something new the “suck” part of the ratio hovers in the high 90s. The ratio of “good” increases as I put in more practice time.
You may remember me telling you about my photography class with Marlaina of Grin Gallery. Her first assignment to us was to take 100 crappy photos every day.
Not 100 great shots. Not 100 interesting shots. Not 100 creative shots.
100 crappy shots
That assignment took the pressure of trying to producing good results before I had worked through my suck factor. Taking 100 photos each day was surprisingly easy. Since they didn’t have to be works of art, I didn’t stress about the subject matter. I just started experimenting with the camera settings. At first, I had around 5 good shots to 95 bad ones. As I learned how to better predict what changes I needed to make to the settings in different lighting conditions, the “suck to good” ratio started to even out. I’m looking forward to keeping the progress going.
Healing Stones Project Idea: Little things, like stones and a couple of Sharpie markers, can make a big difference.
Many years ago when I was working working as an assistant creative director at Penn State, we were suffering through a really depressing winter. Too much work, not enough sun–sound familiar?
We were also struggling to come to terms with a coworker’s serious illness. People were sad, rude, and NOT optimistic.
One of our designers, Stacy, decided that we needed something to raise our spirits. She brought in a bowl with beautiful smooth rocks and asked people to write what they needed on them. She didn’t worry that people would laugh at her. She didn’t whine that there was no money in the budget for rocks. She didn’t worry that she wasn’t in charge. She just wanted to make things better.
Her small effort shifted everyone’s mood. People bonded over the rocks. They wrote things like “no more rushes,” “melting snow,” “respect,” and “hugs.” Even people who weren’t “touchy feely” participated.
Some people put their rocks back in the community bowl; others took them away for personal inspiration. I have one on my desk right now. What little thing made a big difference in your day?
Hash tags are everywhere, but I love the gem of a creative association from this graphic. It made me giggle so I thought I would share it with the rest of you creative souls seeking to find the original idea in your everyday world.
I found it on The Facebook Symphony Orchestra page. The whole page is filled with a great sense of modern humor around the subject of classical music. The question the page admin asked with this particular post was:
What do YOU think Beethoven would tweet if he were alive today? #getcreative
This was my favorite answer.
For one thing, Beethoven wouldn’t restrict himself to sharp keys. ♭whatswiththishashtagobsessionanyway
Zombies + Food Pyramid = Creativity Booster
Yes, it’s true. Zombies and the our own USDA Food Pyramid hold the key to unlocking your creativity.
I don’t know who had the original idea for a Zombie Food Pyramid, but in my mind it happened something like this. Some guy was helping his kids with their homework assignment. They spent the early part of the evening cutting out pictures of vegetables from old magazines and gluing them onto a construction paper pyramid. After the kids went to bed, he settled into his recliner for a nice relaxing episode of The Walking Dead. Not long into the episode, a hungry zombie ripped into the first idiot who wasn’t paying attention to his surroundings. The dad diverted his gaze, ever so briefly, from the gory meal and his eyes landed on the food pyramid drying on the coffee table. And an idea was born.
I read A LOT of books and articles around the subject of creativity and innovation. This week I pulled out my copy of Seeds of Innovation by Elaine Dundon that I received a few years back when I attended a training while working at Penn State. It is a wonderfully approach to nurturing innovation in your organization.
The Creative Mash-Up
One of the methods recommended in the book to kickstart the innovation process is exploring unrelated items to see where the new combination can take you. Seeds certainly isn’t the first place I’ve seen this idea, but it brought it back to the front of my brain.
That’s why when I opened the kitchen cabinet this morning to grab a coffee cup, my hand hovered over one that I bought my husband for Christmas: the zombie food pyramid. It is such a perfect example of the creative mash-up in action.
Editor’s Note: Okay so this homework story is probably total fiction, but it illustrates how our mind can connect to unrelated things to help us create something new. Great ideas are just waiting in our subconscious. We just need to slow down and consider the connections.
You also may have heard that the food pyramid has been replaced with a new “food plate” so kids nowadays are probably gluing pictures onto paper plates, but it’s my story and I’m sticking to it 🙂