Evolving Artistic Creativity into Professional Innovation
In this talk, artists just getting started or who have yet to make it big will learn winning strategies to becoming successful creative professionals. Speaking from his own evolution as artist, teacher, facility founder, consultant, and international speaker, Michael reveals the importance of marketing tactics, self promotion, business sense, and creative self-awareness. He’ll share how artists can develop these traits and methods to grow their career and even expand beyond into new and rewarding areas of expertise.
If Everyone Thinks You’re Crazy, You Might be onto Something
Have you ever shared a creative idea, only to be shot down and told it’s not practical, not profitable, or just plain not possible? In this talk, Michael shares examples from his own life and career to illustrate how having faith in your ideas is critical in determining your success and growth as an artist, creative professional, or innovator. He’ll discuss how to deal with the doubters in a way that empowers you, and the types of people that are drawn to those who dare to follow their dreams. You’ll learn that the more others attempt to deter you, the more you should be encouraged—you just might be onto the next big thing!
Rage against the Norm: Mass Production vs. Creativity
Our culture of convenience and fondness for the familiar has given rise to a global homogeneity of popular culture, artistic expression, and daily life. Michael warns us that this worldwide social flattening has narrowed both our creative biodiversity and collective vision about what is possible. In this talk, Michael makes the case for rejecting the norm—both for ourselves and for our children—and offers suggestions for how we can support the growing movement to individuate, ideate, and innovate.
Harnessing Discontent towards Creative Action
As artists, creative professionals, and innovators, we understand that silencing the inner critic gives us room to freely express and create. However, if we wish to truly excel in our fields, we must also know the proper place and time to engage our critical faculties. Striving for excellence helps us build creative confidence and drives us to previously unimagined heights. In this talk, Michael shares how a healthy dose of discontent with our and others’ work can serve as a transformational and motivating factor in our development as creative and innovative professionals.
Creative License, How to Apply for Your own.
When it comes to envisioning possibilities, do you have the courage to shoot for the moon and stand by your ideas until the end? Or are you silenced by fear, never daring to dream because you’re determined to stay ‘safe?’ How do you ignite creative potential, embrace ‘impossible’ challenges—and never take no for an answer when reaching for the stars? For the past 20 years Michael has sparked innovation around the globe by helping individuals, organizations, and communities release inner blocks to their own innate creativity. In this talk, he shows how audiences can build creative muscle, push the limits of their own imagination, and never give up on their ideas. You were born with a creative voice—isn’t it time you set it free?
Rule Breaker’s Guidebook: How to Turn a ‘No’ into a ‘Yes’
Groundbreaking ideas are often found just outside the realm of what’s deemed possible, profitable, or proper. So how do you get there as an artist, creative professional, or innovator, if you’re deterred by the word ‘No?’ In this talk, Michael shares winning strategies for not only persevering in the face of opposition, but even converting your naysayers into some of your biggest allies. Find out how delving into the realm beyond ‘No’ reveals uncharted creative ground and can deliver some of your most lasting creations.
Building a Creative Nexus: Designing Space for Creativity, Innovation and Collaboration
When organizations focus single-mindedly on success, fear of failure can stifle creativity and innovation. How can teams counter this bottom-line mentality to create environments that foster creativity, innovation, and collaboration? In this talk, Michael shares his valuable experience as founder of the nation’s most successful industrial arts facility (The Crucible), Autodesk’s prototyping lab, and head of Google’s Design Kitchen. Learn to create the kind of non-judgemental space where failure is embraced and happy accidents can happen, leading to groundbreaking creativity and innovation.
Learning to Fly and Grow Roots at the Same Time: Organizational Development
Learn Michael’s secret to building resilient, world-class facilities in arts, education, community development, and innovation. Typically in organizational development, strategy focuses on building services, products, or expertise—activities Michael refer to as ‘flying.’ But in order to establish a truly winning organization, founders need to pay equal attention to ‘growing roots’—connecting with and serving the communities they reside in. In this talk, Michael will share examples from his own experience as founder of the nation’s most successful industrial arts facility (The Crucible), Autodesk’s prototyping lab, and head of Google’s Design Kitchen. He’ll discuss why this tactic is so important and how organization builders can use their own ingenuity to make it happen.
Playing with Opposites: Innovation and the Unexpected
Are you ready to push the envelope and create groundbreaking work in your field? In this talk, artists, creative professionals, and innovators will learn how to harness the interplay between extremes and combine unexpected elements to take ideation to the next level—often with lasting impact and success. Packed with enlightening and entertaining examples from Michael’s 20+ years as an innovator, this talk will get your inspiration flowing in ways you have yet to imagine.
Foresight into the Future Using Design Thinking
Design Thinking can save designers, innovators, and organizations hundreds, thousands, even millions of dollars—and hours of effort spared to match. Using examples drawn from his twenty-plus years in innovation, Michael offers audiences an understanding of what sets design thinking methodology apart from more traditional modes of research. Discover how this proven method in innovation provides critical insight into how products and services will be received, and what customers really want—before extensive resources are spent.