This weekly newsletter is designed to cultivate or activate curiosity. Each issue includes some combination of thought-starters, interviews, general musings, a few clues, and occasional silliness. If your own curiosity is piqued, please subscribe using the form below. We'll have a great time.
Each Thursday, I share three recent discoveries. It’s like the catch of the week without that lingering salty scent.
As I alluded to in Sunday’s edition of percolate, I had an exhausting two weeks at work helping to prep fellow employees to work from home. That’s why there was no new thursday three last week. I know you understand. Your routines have been uprooted, too. We really are all in this together.
Here's the selection for March 19:
One more reason zoo animals deserve to be treated with the utmost care and respect: they can instantly lighten our moods—especially on Twitter. I’ve been a fan of @oregonzoo’s posts for awhile, and this video of penguins on stairs introduced me to @2OceansAquarium.
I’ve finally been watching Fosse/Verdon, and it really is so good. I’m adding the book it’s based on, Fosse by Sam Wasson, to my reading list. P.S. Choreographer Twyla Tharp’s The Creative Habit and Keep it Moving are also on my list.
I love all the ways people are staying connected via social media and video during this time of social distancing. And the Sofa Singers is one of the best. (I think I’ll register for a session with them next week. See you there?)
IvyMagic is my creative consultancy, which exists to add focus and oomph to all sorts of ideas—and the people who have them. While the kind of consulting I do for clients is as varied as creativity itself, I specialize in offering three types of services: workshopping, advising, and assessing. Delve into the details of what that means when you visit the IvyMagic site.
Minted, Society6 and the like are great for finding affordable art prints—but don’t be surprised if you go to dinner at someone’s house and see the same print you just purchased hanging around.
After experimenting with one of those print on demand sites, I wondered what it would be like to mix affordability with exclusivity, offering only a few limited edition prints at a time. The result of that thought experiment has led me to build an online design shop, LierreStudio, which will be live in Spring 2020. I’ll announce the launch on Instagram, so stay tuned.
I could give you a bunch of bio blah-blah-blah, but I think this Q&A is more fun.
Growing up, which fictional book character did you fantasize about being?
I was mad about Alice in Wonderland and loved dressing up as Alice for a Book Character Day in fourth grade, yet I longed to be like the talented Pauline Fossil in Ballet Shoes and Sorrel Forbes in Theater Shoes.
If you could go to outer space, which planet would you visit first and how would you bedazzle your spacesuit?
I’d visit one of the most recently discovered exoplanets for sure! And as much as I love accessorizing, a NASA spacesuit is pretty spot-on without any additional baubles.
To borrow from Monty Python: What is your quest?
I want to craft a life that's full of more love and creativity with each passing year.
Is there a song lyric that best describes you?
What’s the best advice you ever received from a stranger or someone you barely know?
One of the founders of a large, celebrated ad agency once told me that a female copywriter I admired, who worked for him, was almost fired for not being true to her own voice. He said I should remember that, too—that my voice was worth it.
What is your favorite word and why?
Telekinetic. It's a multi-syllable word without pretension. It sounds substantial, yet a little mischievous. And of course, who wouldn't love a word that calls to mind the siblings in Escape From Witch Mountain?
Are you a Mac or a PC?
Pssst. Don't tell the PCs I’ve worked with, but I'm absolutely a Mac.
Where are you most creative?
It's a three-way tie: home, the Oregon Coast and Place des Vosges. (Honorable Mention: trains)
In five words or less, how did you get here?
curiosity and countless hours
Did any specific teachers help shape or inspire your interest in writing and creativity?
Oui! My third-grade teacher, Mrs. (Susan) Vasquez, gave the class assignments that helped me pour my imagination into words. Before her, I didn't know I could use language to create imagery in other people's minds—or evoke emotion in their hearts. In college, my copywriting professor, Ad Team advisor and mentor, Ann Maxwell, set me on a path toward embracing my uniqueness as a writer and creative person. (I'm thankful that she has now become a friend who sends me pixie dust).
How do you hard-boil an egg?
I put the eggs in a pan (nothing fancy) and fill the pan with enough water to just cover the eggs. Then I put the pan on the stove, turn it on high, and wait for the water to boil. Once it starts boiling, I set a timer for ten minutes. I also turn down the temperature if the water is about to boil over. When the ten minutes are up, I remove the pan from the stove, put it under the faucet in the kitchen sink and run cold water into the pan to cool the water a bit. I let it sit in the sink until the water's completely cooled before I remove the eggs (I've learned that if I remove them before the water's cool, they're harder to peel).
fun + free
In support of the third issue of percolate, I created desktop and phone wallpapers. Copy them to your device and enjoy!