Giving gifts is more complicated than navigating the trash people at the mall. This past week in Creativity class, we followed this video tutorial from Stanford’s design school that took us through nine steps of the process of giving a gift. We worked with a partner in class to figure out the last time they gave a gift and provide solutions for them.
I was paired with my classmate Sarah and the last gift she gave was a little Valentine’s package for her friend who goes to Arkansas. I got to dive deep into what this friendship means to her and how it has developed since they were 9 years old. It was fascinating to learn about what pushes her to give gifts and how that varies between the different people in her life.
We then had to think of “radical” solutions to a problem statement we created based on the reasoning for our partner to give a gift. I really took “radical” to heart and my solutions included things like giving her friend heated up gloves and using an owl. Lucky me, Sarah is a huge Harry Potter fan and the owl idea was her favorite.
The best and probably most Project Runway moment of the whole class was when we had 10 minutes to create a prototype of our solution with crappy arts and crafts supplies. I used lots of different pipe cleaners, some packing material and feathers to create Sarah’s messenger owl, Charlie. Everyone in the class cooed over my fuzzy blob of an owl and Sarah absolutely loved it.
Everyone took this activity differently, but we all agreed that the rushed timing off all the steps freaked us out. What it made us do is just trust in our instincts and dive in to our ideas, no matter how strange they may seem. The ticking of the clock didn’t distract me as much as it just pushed me give in to my creativity. I found this exercise really fun and explorative to who I am when it comes to solving problems and who my classmates are when it comes to giving.
Also, I have a new little owl friend hanging in my apartment, so that is pretty cool.