Monday, March 25, 2013

Latest idea bids at

It seems like ideas are very similar to dandelions... pluck one up and more sprout in its place.  That has been my experience this month and there are several catalyst to idea generation I'd like to share.

1) Sitting with an empty page and sharpie at a coffee shop:

There's something about watching people flow about the small space where I sit.  They drink their orders, or eat and sit.  Often shrouded in silence.  Some read, others are on their phone.  It reminds me of a temple if I don't think about the money exchanged.

2) The moment after I've read several chapters in a book:

I've read Richard Florida's Who's Your City, and I'm halfway through The Creative Class.  Several times after getting up from the book to take a break an idea will strike me in such a way all my senses get it.  It's as though the silence I wear to listen to the authors thoughts, becomes a bucket to see my environment in a new light.

3) Shower

It's where everyone sings and day dreams.  It's also the place I forget ideas since I don't want to spend money on a water proof notepad.

4) After a meeting

Don't tell anyone, but if I'm at a meeting where I'm not being addressed.  I doodle to stay awake, and it works.

5) Mind Maps

Drawing a mind map and exploding various areas where I cook, play, and garden often opens up my mind to see my environment in a non-linear way.

6) 1 Answer, 2 Questions.

This comes from Kevin Kelly's post about solutions bringing up more problems.  If I have an idea, I pretend it exists and start saying, "Now that I have this thing to fix my issues, what problems will I find if I explore this new world?".  The pretend product should at least generate 2 new questions which need answers.

7) Collaboration

Working with others has often taken me through dry spells where I was either spent from generating ideas or was generating ideas that were too similar.  Often when someone else is on fire, it helps me out of my rut as I help them with brainstorming or renders.

Here's the fruit from these 7 idea generation techniques.  Mind you, they aren't completed products, but concept renders being considered and voted for by the community.  I will post the top three based on highest votes: