Mary Campisi
Mary Campisi
Mary Campisi

The art of imagination and brainstorming

The art of imagination and brainstorming 1Our granddaughter spent the afternoon with us last week. I’d already told her that we had a lot of “work” to do and that included organizing the drawer where we kept envelopes, cards, and return address labels. Since mom’s passing, I inherited all of her stuff and let me tell you, the charitable contribution sites certainly had her on their list for frequent donations. My intent was to separate cards, address labels, and miscellaneous envelopes and give my granddaughter a stack to “play school” with and write thank-you’s. However, what actually happened was so far from my initial plan that I had to share how it turned into a whole other adventure!

As we looked at the address labels, we both commented on the designs: flowers, snowflakes, hearts, butterflies, birds…. There were so many, with such beautiful colors. As I studied the labels, I had an idea. What if we clipped those designs and made a drawing from them? I told my granddaughter she could draw the base of a tree and then use the label cutouts for leaves, flowers, whatever she wanted. She could even take the label hearts and create a heart tree. That made her comment about making heart flowers… Heart shrubs… A heart castle! Why stop there? Why not create a heart village and use the long roll of white paper I keep for book plotting and map out the whole village? Yes! She loved that idea. Her eyes lit up and she smiled and said, “And we could have a heart ball!”

We clipped more designs from the address labels. Butterflies. What about a butterfly sanctuary in the castle where you open the door to find them fluttering about? More hearts? A heart ball gown. Ice skaters… Snowmen… An ice-skating pond. On and on it went with me coming up with one idea and my granddaughter piping in with another. I then stopped and told her that was called brainstorming and we were using our imagination.

I love the way an almost six-year-old says imagination! Such wonder and excitement. We continued to brainstorm as I wrote down all of the different possibilities for the village. Two and a half hours later, we stopped. I placed the label cutouts in a manila envelope with the list of what our village would look like and then I made a copy of that list because…things do get lost… I saved the extra address labels we still hadn’t clipped and asked my granddaughter if she wanted to start creating the village on her own. To my delight, she wanted to wait for me.

Yes, another art playdate! We’ll work on our heart village and continue to use our imagination and brainstorming as we create. When we finished for the day, I asked, “Do you see how much fun we had? And it didn’t even cost us a penny.”

I love it when you can sneak a little life lesson into everyday life. She now understands the concept of imagination and brainstorming… More to come, and one day I’ll share the finished products. That’s it for now. I’m off to check my mail for more address labels a.k.a. potential artwork.

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