Day 3 – Creating My Future

There is a new energy brewing this morning. Sleep time recollections were powerful. Creating a company or creating a product is the conundrum. What should I be working on? Should I be changing the core question?

Trust the process, Skip. Bring out the images and let’s get to arranging them. I am going to try hard this morning to do something other than verticals and horizontals. This morning I select the nautilus shells for the center focus.

The story I tell is a combination of sleep time work and staring at the images.

“In the twilight of awakening this morning, I realized that the previous two days were working on the vision of a product.  When what I really should be working on is the vision of a company.  As I ‘awoke’ to those thoughts, I realized that I should be doing innovation at the company level not just at the product level. I shouldn’t be trying to form one single company and I don’t really want to form an incubator company but rather something that will encourage a thousand flowers to bloom.  The real work is not absorbing or co-opting VisualsSpeak or Lizi or the Design Way team or Shift Labs (all folks I am advising) but finding a way to obtain the resources to allow each to flourish AND to develop and nurture the talent that lies within each group.

“So working really hard to overcome my hard won visual design sense (hard won but still at the micro level), I fought the urge to use straight lines and came up with this morning’s collage (OK, a tiny baby step beyond the right angles). At the center is the importance of a natural spiraling structure – from the small seed crystal product and inspiration spirals out to customers and the customers customers a dynamic and natural chain of learning and results. Some of the efforts will be with the physical, interactive world symbolized by the clay pot (distributed manufacturing through 3D printing). The beauty of distributed manufacturing is that anyone can now start a company (fostered entrepreneuring) no matter where they are in the world, much like you need very little to ‘throw a pot.’ The fruits that turn into wine are a reminder that within each tasty, beautiful berry is the seed of another plant bearing fruit. The rhythms of life remind me that each startup needs to build in its own regenerative core as a key value – both to encourage entrepreneuring from within and provide a product which will be tasted by the millions.

“The paintings (yes, I know they are all on one side again, maybe tomorrow I can do better) represent ‘it’s a journey, not a destination’ and there are many hands providing light both for the growing of products and for the growing of people.  We don’t know where the journey ends, but we know that there are multiple places to celebrate and to stop and share what we’ve learned. Sometimes we need to turn our world upside down and examine what is figure and what is ground, what is the source and what is the ‘sink’ (destination) of that which shines from each company each day. The ephemeral rainbow is a reminder to stop and SEE the beauty each day in what our talent produces, recognizing that there is no ephemeral pot of gold, but an even bigger gift – the multi-hued light that connects the rain (the down periods) with the light (the up periods).”

On a related note, I am preparing for and attending a “seminar” this evening with Gray Kochhar-Lindgren (one of the folks on the phone the other day) and several other UW Bothell humanities folks.  The seminar is about technopoeisis as described thusly:

 “To be clear, the ‘topic’ is rather broad; it’s really many topics. The term ‘technopoeisis’ does a little work to explain what we are focused on. By reading philosophers and cultural theorists, we want to understand the ways that technics (the material objects in our daily lives) and technique (the practice of using those material objects, individually and collectively) help produce (and are produced by) (poeisis – ‘bringing forth’) a particular moment of the social, political and/or cultural.”

Our first paper is one from Martin HeideggerThe Question Concerning Technology.” It is interesting that this paper shows up now which is about getting to the essence of technology while I am trying to get at the essence of VisualsSpeak and the essence of my new venture(s).


Christine as neutral observer computer that just notices and throws out possibilities that might help participant see differently

The paintings are clustered together, but so are the photographs. It’s a strong repeating pattern, so what could it mean? Is it reflecting something about the way you are thinking about the question?

All of the images touch the nautilus except the berries. What is different about that photo? Would the story shift if that photo moved in to touch the center image?


Thank you, oh neutral silicon/carbon observer, from the plateau of hills so far south of the gray cloudy Bainbridge.

So this is interesting.  You are commenting each time only on the images, and not on the content.  Why is that (process wise)?  Is this what you’ve always done which is to restrict yourself to the images (as story) rather than the story (interpretation) as story? Or something else completely?

Just asking because “Skip acting as computer” would be wanting to visualize the relationships in the text (and to the tagging of the images and image analytics of the images that are selected).

“Skip as human being and human doing” – I am into a couple of hours now of compiling notes triggered by the three days of images and the last several weeks of activities looking for my patterns of immersion versus stuckness of not moving into action.  Well, one form of powerful action was to commit to writing a blog entry each day for three months to develop at least some capability for writing (non-business writing – something I have aspired to do for 40 years).


Ok, so I’m cheating a bit because I know things about you……but I’m trying to stay more neutral than I would do in a live interaction.

I do primarily focus on the images when I facilitate mainly because it is my superpower. Most people don’t see the image patterns, and often they hold the deeper information. I would look at the verbal patterns later, when there is more information. The verbal patterns over a week are more significant than one day.

With you specifically, the last thing I want to do is engage you verbally because you already do that – its a core pattern. If you could think your way out of this with words you would have already done it. This isn’t a surface level stuck – it’s deep. So I’m looking at getting around what you usually do, and trying to get you to do something else. Some of what I am doing is tugging at the unconscious through the image patterns.

I could “tell” you things, but if you discover them, you will own them much more deeply.

What about doing an iPad painting everyday for three months? See what that sparks……

I do think we should also play with engaging with the verbal patterns and various combinations – testing to see what is most effective for which segment.

Make sense?


Yup.  Thanks.

I have on my list to do art everyday (a commitment to self I made a couple of months ago) but it is subservient to the do a blog post every day (which is getting harder to do as I break away from my home office each and every day).

I would love to do a painting a day, but I am just not able to get the hang of it enough to get started (even with the acrylic paints at the Bootcamp). I tried to get started by just trying to copy some of the iPad paintings you had done, copy in the loosest sense of the word, and I couldn’t come remotely close.

Sooooo, is there the proverbial hour long tutorial you can do to get me started, or point me to one of the 100s of iPad painting app tutorials?

I feel like I am missing something basic.

I also thought about doing a photograph a day as a way to bridge the gap.  I do enjoy photography and seem to be able to do pleasing pictures (of everything except people) on a regular basis.  But my friend Cash Elston points out that I need to move beyond just taking the picture to spending time “developing” the picture with my Lightroom app.  Yet another step I haven’t taken.

The other “art” I’ve been looking at is doing generative music creation on the iPad.  The wonderful professionals who developed KOAN many moons ago that Brian Eno used for much of his generative music have finally produced an iPad app Mixtikl.  I have started to play with it but haven’t gotten very far.

It is clear from the progress I feel I’ve made with the writing (several of my humanities professor colleagues are sharing how much they enjoy reading my blog which boggles my mind) that the key is to practice every day. With the painting I just can’t seem to get over the basics enough to keep going.

Thanks for the encouragement.


Consider the possibility that it is about the process not the product……

Try Omnisketch. Just look at it as a discovery process, what does each brush do?

Or if you want something more real world painting like, try ArtRage.


It’s about allowing your intuitive and other parts of your brain to come forward and create a space for the insights to emerge.

It’s not about creating any kind of product. You can throw it away and still have the value.

Once again, Christine kindly reminds me that it is all about “process art.”

One more day.

This entry was posted in Content with Context, Design, Human Centered Design, User Experience, Visual pattern Language, VisualsSpeak. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Day 3 – Creating My Future

  1. Pingback: Envisioning My Future – Day 1 | David Socha's Blog

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