Vanderbilt Creative Practice Bootcamp at the Curb Center

On Septermber 2nd, 2011, I went with Peter Durand and Perrin Ireland to The Curb Center at Vanderbilt University to support Peter as he offered a Creative Practice Bootcamp on graphic faciliation. I also had the honor of scribing for Parker Gates, designer and faciliator for the design studio at e+ CancerCare, located in Nashville, TN. And finally, I even got to sit in as a participant on a session by Eric Booth, teaching artist, actor, author, and international arts learning consultant, on Habits of Creative Problem Solving.


Peter began the graphic faciliation bootcamp by having each person create a visual introduction, using no words. He then had one person out of each group introduce every other person in their group, relying on their memory of what each person communicated, using visuals. It was great to see how the person doing the introducing was able to remember so much by just looking at the visuals of the other people.


As the workshop progressed, he moved into how to draw basic shapes (circle, square, triangle), how to draw using your elbow and shoulder, and how to draw faces. Eyebrows are key!


The great thing about the bootcamp was watching how much everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves and diving right into the exercises Peter was giving the group. I observed smiles all around as people began to allow themselves to have fun with their newfound graphic facilitation skills:)



Peter then had them build group mind-maps. They created a central topic and then each chose a sub-topic to branch off of the central topic. They then created visual icons to complement their words. I observed that this seemed to really focus the groups and have them work together. All in all, it was great to be supporting this process and also see how much everyone really took to the activities.


I also got to sit in for a while on a talk by Eric Booth, called Habits Of Creative Problem Solving. He was a very knowledgeable and enthusiastic speaker and offered some very inspiring ideas to the faculty and students who were participating in the Bootcamp. He had us do a miming exercise where we changed our intention and awareness as we performed an imaginary action, such as brushing your teeth! He had a lot to say about how important it was to give students 'experiental experiences', and how they already posess so much knowledge, and we must learn to celebrate their inherent intelligence for knowing how they learn.

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Scribing by Perrin Ireland of Alphachimp Studio, Inc.

My partner-in-scribe for the day, Perrin Ireland, had the privelege of scribing the talk by Eric Booth. I really enjoyed her use of color, and how she used the space of the paper-she rocked it!


And then there was Parker Gates. Parker Gates led an enthusiastic session called 'Design Thinking'. He and his cohort, Brent Taylor, had the whole room enthralled with their very active session. It was very quick paced, and very interactive, as they had each participant share their needs as people with another person in a room. From here, they designed prototypes for how to get these needs met. There was even a rousing game of rock, paper, scissors, where the loser had to cheer on the winner! It was really enjoyable and actually, quite funny!

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Scribing by Nick Navatta of Alphachimp Studio, Inc.

I was the one who got to scribe for Parker Gates and Brent Taylor! It was a very enjoyable session for me because, I got a little bit extra time to get my bearings with what was going on in the room, through observation, and then create images based on what I saw. There wasn't too much, 'talking', but there was a lot going on in the room and because of that, I was able to focus on mainly creating images. All in all, it was a great day and a great environment infused with energy and enthusiasm.