Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Whack on the Side of the Head Wednesday: Impossible!

How do you whack the perfect dessert?  Impossible.  

Today Von Oech's creative whack pack gets put to W-O-R-K!  The deck of cards, of course is designed to whack our thinking... to take an imperfect idea and make it better.  I am not qualified for this.  Ice cream to me is the ultimate dessert... perfect in its current state.  In need of no changes... nada... zippo. About the only recommendation I might concede worth making is some kind of topping for an otherwise ordinary scoop of vanilla ice cream.

The hair just stood up on a handful of your necks, I'm sure.  My husband's included.  He's a purist.  Vanilla ice cream, no chunks, no chips, no syrup.  Not me.  I like texture.  The more the better (unless of course it's a nut which I won't eat due to allergies).  Nonetheless, if my choices are straight up vanilla ice cream or a cup of fruit cocktail... I'm going vanilla ice cream every day of the week.

Are you ready to start whacking?  All warmed up (or cooled down as the case may be)?  

As you might have imagined, today's we will whack ICE CREAM.  We'll go broad.  That is to say, we'll look at ice cream in any form... flavor, methods of delivery, venues for selling, or when and how it is consumed... you pick.  Now the whack...

Imagine How Others Would Do It.  What people do you respect for creative achievement?  A leader in your field?  A teacher?  A parent?  Now, imagine that one of these people is responsible for developing your concept.  What would they do?  How would they approach it?  How would someone else change your idea?

Here's my crack at a whack... My friend, Sherry is the first person who came to mind when thinking about someone I respect for creative achievement.  A little about Sherry...  

I came to know her while working at Southern Methodist University.  She was part of what I affectionately refer to as the "Dream Team" (a group of people with which I had the privilege of working for a number of years).  I - the ideas person - would dream up some seemingly outlandish orientation theme, requiring props, printed materials, back drops, costumes... the whole nine yards.  The Dream Team made the ideas come to life.  Deanie, the props; Fred, anything made of wood; Quynh, master organizer and overseer of all details; Carol, the money lady and creative financier; and Sherry... well Sherry was the graphic artist who set the whole thing in motion.  For, without a "look" nothing else could follow.  To say we were a WELL OILED MACHINE would be an understatement!

I have dreams for Sherry and me.  I've told her since the day I left SMU, that one day I will make it big and when I do, my first order of business will be to hire her on staff.  Sherry is a total package.  She's master photographer, a fellow paper-lover, a nature lover, has a genuine love for children, and never, never, never complains.  She has the midas touch, transforming even the simplest thing into something that looks like a million bucks.  The world is a more aesthetically pleasing place because she is in it!

Sherry left SMU for a short stint and moved to another part of Texas where she and a couple of other women opened an art studio where, among other things, children's art classes were taught.  So, when thinking about how Sherry might change ice cream, children and art immediately came to mind.

Would she open an ice cream bar where children could order sundaes not only by flavors, but also by shape?  Want a panda bear sundae?  Sherry sets to work using ice cream, oreos, m&m's, Butter fingers and a variety of other toppings to depict the bear's paws, eyes, and mouth.  How about a giraffe?  Maybe a scoop of ice cream with a pretzel rod sticking out?  A snowman sounds yummy?  Two scoops of vanilla, a marshmallow hat, red hot buttons....  I'm limited, but Sherry... NO!  I feel certain she could go on for days rattling off animals and all sorts of other shapes children could create using ice cream and assorted toppings.  Or maybe she wouldn't even do the decorating.  Maybe the whole point of the ice cream bar is that the basic ice cream sculpture is provided, but kids use their creativity to decorate their bear, giraffe, or snow man however they see fit.  Sherry could make it work.

How about you?  Whose creative achievements do you respect and how might they whack ice cream?
Here's one final kicker to make today extra fun.  I have in my possession three bags from the clearance rack at Target.  They make the perfect tote for moving creative projects (card making, book writing, sewing, etc...) from one place to another.  One bag will go to the highlowaha reader who submits the winning idea (as awarded by my neutral neighbor.  Ideas should be submitted by 9:00 CST).  The second bag will go to the person who inspired your whack (the person you respect for his/her creative achievement) and the third bag will go to... are you ready?... a RANDOM WINNER selected from my Random Acts of Kindness box of postcards!  Yes, the box of postcards is finally activated! 

Still need to submit your postcard for future giveaways (another coming up later this week and still another next week) and random acts?  My address is:
Claudia Beeny
4012 Harvestwood Court
Grapevine, Texas 76051
Remember all you lurkers... no need to even reveal yourself.  Just send a postcard with your address and that's enough to get you included in the drawings. 
Signing off until tomorrow...

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