Browsing articles from "September, 2010"

The Stunningly Designful Photography of Carl Kleiner

Sep 30, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Blog, Posts  //  Comments Off on The Stunningly Designful Photography of Carl Kleiner

Carl Kleiner is one of the most brilliant, design-driven photographers I’ve come across in quite some time. IKEA recently published a gorgeous baking book called “Homebaked is Best” that uses his photos (see the first entry on his homepage). His work for this book is stunningly designful. While you’re at it, check out his other photos.

Carl Kleiner photo

Nine Dots to Design Thinking

Sep 28, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Articles, Blog  //  Comments Off on Nine Dots to Design Thinking

I attend a weekly class on mindfulness, a form of meditation that emphasizes awareness of the present moment and “being” rather than “doing”. A large component of the class consists of interactive games and exercises meant to illustrate concepts of the mindfulness methodology.

Last week the instructor, Cathy Reinstein, introduced us to a simple mind-game that involves nine dots arranged on a grid-like layout. The goal is to connect all nine dots using only four connected lines, and in the process to demonstrate how our habituation to prior ways of being too often obscures us from approaching problems with a fresh perspective.

Take 10 minutes to try solving it before reading the rest of this article.

Nine Dots game

It occurred to me that this game and its solution powerfully illustrate the concept of design thinking. How so?

Most people see nine dots and label it as a grid, which then informs the process in which they go about solving it. Some even try to “think outside the box” and get creative.

But it is just nine dots. The hackneyed notion of “thinking outside of the box” still implies that it *is* a box.

A more aware approach is to visualize the nine dots as a completely new experience, detached from the box analogy. The solution to the game then becomes much more obvious.

The point of being mindful is not to preconceive outcomes but rather to simply experience what is. Too often we are hyperfocused on “details” and “solutions” and neglect to take in “experience”. Consequently, we miss a large part of what is going on around us in our daily lives.

So how does mindfulness in meditation relate to design thinking in business?

In order to drive a brand, business or product forward, you must begin with an awareness of where you are and where you need to be, coupled with a commitment to jump into the unknown. You must be unafraid to fail or falter. In the process, you must design outstanding customer experiences, like those of Apple, Target or IKEA, that require your company to be open to new and uncharted ways of approaching obstacles.

In business, like in the nine dots game, our lack of awareness often keeps us mired in our problems rather than floating above the problems in a way that they can be solved. We need to be willing to expand beyond our habitual ways of being to create our worldview from scratch. We need to be design thinkers.

Look at your brand, business or product as an entirely new experience. Approach your obstacles with childlike wonder. Be with what *is*. Be mindful. Innovative ideas will flow from this space.

Is the glass half full or half empty? Who cares?

Sep 27, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Blog, Posts  //  Comments Off on Is the glass half full or half empty? Who cares?

The designful thinker’s way of solving problems:

“One day, someone showed me a glass of water that was half full. And he said, ‘Is it half full or half empty?’ So I drank the water. No more problem.”

– Alejandro Jodorowsky, Chilean filmmaker

Splash glass by David Hazy

Nigerian President Announces Candidacy on Facebook

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Blog, Posts  //  Comments Off on Nigerian President Announces Candidacy on Facebook

Nigeria’s current president, Goodluck Jonathan, announced through a message on his Facebook profile that he would run in the upcoming presidential election. I am fascinated by this announcement for two reasons:

First, Nigeria’s average wage is less than $1 per day, and very few Nigerians have access to the Internet. So how many potential voters will he reach?

Second, I feel that, although this is obviously a PR stunt meant to divert attention from his opponent, it is nonetheless brilliant to make this announcement using social media. Mr. Jonathan has over 211,000 Facebook followers, he posts almost daily and each of his posts receives massive engagement of over 4,000 comments and “likes”.

Goodluck Jonathan's FB profile

So, in a country with such scant Internet access, this is a bold move. It remains to be seen how many votes all this social media attention garners Mr. Jonathan come election day.

Well, to him I say: “Goodluck, Jonathan!”

A link to my original news source for this item can be found here: Nigeria’s leader declares election bid on Facebook

Umbrella Rides The Wind

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Featured, Portfolio  //  Comments Off on Umbrella Rides The Wind

Quisque ullamcorper enim vel tellus rhoncus et fermentum diam congue. Phasellus eu turpis lorem, id gravida nunc. In bibendum nulla vel quam pretium a fringilla erat ornare. Etiam hendrerit quam sed orci congue posuere laoreet urna condimentum. Nam vestibulum gravida semper. Maecenas ac nunc purus, et aliquam urna. Curabitur quis tellus vitae dolor tristique egestas. Fusce metus sem, accumsan vel auctor non, laoreet eget nulla. Donec lacinia elit ac nulla hendrerit at tincidunt justo facilisis. Praesent vel risus ut urna vestibulum fermentum. Pellentesque sollicitudin cursus blandit. In hac habitasse platea dictumst. Maecenas sed nulla sed lacus elementum dapibus. Praesent hendrerit semper tempor. Integer sollicitudin ultrices mattis.

Hip Young Woman

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Featured, Portfolio  //  Comments Off on Hip Young Woman

Donec nec facilisis nisi. Vivamus tempor feugiat velit gravida vehicula. Donec faucibus pellentesque ipsum id varius. Ut rutrum metus sed neque ultricies a dictum ante sagittis. Proin in facilisis diam. Sed placerat imperdiet purus, id sollicitudin magna pretium sit amet. Vivamus orci dolor, iaculis at volutpat eget, fermentum vel quam. Nullam non neque urna, ut ultrices nisi. Nulla convallis aliquam tortor, a imperdiet massa aliquet vel. Cras eu ante turpis, ut ornare mauris. Maecenas orci erat, ullamcorper at semper in, sodales ac diam. Sed eu eleifend felis. Praesent fringilla, arcu id interdum egestas, ante lorem blandit leo, ac imperdiet velit sapien ac metus. Proin lectus sem, pellentesque eu consequat sed, pulvinar ut risus. Pellentesque ut rutrum mauris. Nunc id ante libero. Vestibulum luctus lectus nec neque tempor quis congue purus consequat.

Young Man In The City

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Featured, Portfolio  //  Comments Off on Young Man In The City

Mauris suscipit porta commodo. Pellentesque mattis interdum nibh sit amet sodales. Curabitur euismod sem in dui cursus et faucibus leo dignissim. Integer non porttitor leo. Integer luctus adipiscing dui nec tempor. Pellentesque convallis ullamcorper dui ornare mattis. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos. Donec tincidunt urna in est sodales tempor. Integer libero nunc, auctor a tristique ut, scelerisque ut felis. Phasellus quis magna nisl, id sagittis dolor. Nunc interdum arcu at ligula imperdiet rhoncus aliquam massa posuere.

A Monk Walks His Path

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Portfolio  //  Comments Off on A Monk Walks His Path

Vestibulum non libero in quam vestibulum dignissim a sed sem. Nullam vitae est vitae urna rhoncus sollicitudin. Ut congue lacus molestie augue gravida vitae auctor tortor ornare. Vestibulum sollicitudin vestibulum urna ut tempus. Duis eget dui placerat dui interdum fermentum. Cras lorem nunc, elementum vitae rhoncus quis, aliquet vel erat. Duis elementum justo sed velit mattis semper. Maecenas vel lacus vel nulla suscipit tincidunt in quis nulla. Duis sed metus vitae nunc euismod lobortis.

A Stylish Stud

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Portfolio  //  Comments Off on A Stylish Stud

Phasellus molestie congue molestie. Nullam tempus eros et lorem auctor imperdiet. Donec eget imperdiet tortor. Morbi lobortis rutrum eros eu iaculis. Vivamus venenatis consectetur metus et ullamcorper. Pellentesque tincidunt dictum augue, at sollicitudin mi venenatis eget. Etiam sit amet nisi quis lacus ullamcorper interdum. Etiam at urna eu nunc mattis varius. Phasellus ultricies congue convallis. Fusce vulputate, lectus quis viverra bibendum, est enim interdum velit, sit amet sodales tellus enim id mi.

The Masked Model

Sep 15, 2010   //   by Michael   //   Portfolio  //  Comments Off on The Masked Model

Aenean eget dui eros, non lobortis lectus. Vestibulum eleifend laoreet orci ac elementum. Nulla lacinia, orci et sollicitudin ullamcorper, massa risus porta felis, id egestas dolor diam et risus. Pellentesque convallis leo eget lacus cursus dapibus. Sed in nisl at nisi semper malesuada sed fringilla augue. Quisque venenatis felis non velit placerat tincidunt. Suspendisse potenti. Praesent fermentum malesuada placerat. Phasellus pretium interdum neque, nec accumsan tortor lacinia ut. Fusce eget orci nunc, non sagittis augue. Donec sodales, erat fermentum aliquam interdum, magna metus condimentum ante, nec imperdiet purus sem ac dui. Maecenas enim sapien, ultricies id feugiat nec, blandit at velit.


Let’s talk!

Feel free to contact me by email!


  • 6 Ingredient Paleo C
  • Ultimate Guide To Be
  • "Finding the Flavors
Follow Me on Pinterest

Follow This Blog!