Creativity Moves Nashville (and Alphachimp!)


Perrin Ireland graphically records Creativity Moves Nashville; Credit: Matthew Freise, NossiAlphachimps love the lure of the open road- we’ll willingly pack our markers and paper, load up the old roller luggage, and travel around the world to graphically capture an event.

But the events we attend at home, here in Nashville, are a sweet relief. What could be better than going to an action-packed event full of inspiring speakers who all live within a stones throw of us, and then getting home in time for dinner?

Needless to say we were thrilled to be invited to scribe a recent local event, Creativity Moves Nashville. Organized by Jacob Weiss, this half-day conference, held on May 24th, was devoted to connecting artists with causes and entrepreneurs.

Weiss exemplifies a compelling method for artists to lead creative lives full of meaning and success. The solution is simple: make your art relevant, and purposeful, by connecting with a nonprofit or an entrepreneur with a cause, and create impact in your community.

Held at Belmont’s Black Box Theater, Weiss opened the event juggling, setting the stage for a variety of creative, out-of-the-box, totally inspiring Nashville doers to share their models for staying engaged and giving back.

Graphic capture of presentations by Jacob Weiss, Sam Davidson, Jason Michaels, and Lu SiposTo name just a few of the great presenters: We heard from Lu Sipos, a mother of a toddler with cancer who created a comforting toy for child cancer patients, called Chemo Duck, and grew a non-profit out of it. Jason Michaels, a world-famous illusionist, shared about discovering the remedy for his Tourette’s Syndrome the first time he stepped on stage at age fourteen.

Cindy Tinker co-organized of a song-writer’s workshop for cancer patients. Ian Rhett, founder of the Design-A-Thon, gave an Ignite presentation about the event, which gathers designers in an enclosed space for a design challenge: solve a local non-profit’s marketing problem within 24 hours. 

Ian Rhett, Cindy Tinker, and Gemma HolmesWeiss took center stage once more to deliver the afternoon’s keynote address, “Creativity, Causes, & Careers”, a potpourri of strategies for growing one’s brand as an artist by being relevant to the community through partnerships, one to one connection, sincere passion, and, most of all, listening to the needs of the community, and helping to meet them.

He encouraged artists to not only seek to serve a cause, but also to discover how the cause could serve the creative. When so often it seems we must be out for ourselves entirely as artists in order to eke out a living, Weiss’s perspective on serving others first through the power of creative storytelling was a very refreshing call to action.


A participant enjoys Lego Nashville Closing out the afternoon was Jody Lentz, who ran the participants through a hands-on Lego workshop, facilitating as attendees broke into groups and explored, in three-dimensions, how creatives and non-profits can best collaborate in Nashville. 

Perrin Ireland at the easel; Credit: Matthew Freise, Nossi Alphachimp loves the opportunity to learn about amazing people creatively contributing to community- we were very honored to be included in this event, and look forward to more of its kind!  

To learn more about Creativity Moves Nashville, Nashville's creative movement that gives back, click here:

To see more of the graphic captures from this event, check out our Flickr set

To see more of Matthew Freise's fabulous photographs of the event, check out his Facebook album