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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Creativi-tea with Sir Ken Robinson

I had the rare and wonderful opportunity
to have "breakfast creativi-tea" with Sir Ken Robinson while in New York.
He was to keynote to educators at the NYSCATE conference that morning, but he had just enough time to have breakfast with other speakers and conference organizers.
People were getting their copy of Sir Ken's inspiring book,
"The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything," autographed.

His book is "my cup of tea."

It shines the light on those who have "followed their North Stars"
- many of those who had been given an early diagnosis of being "at-risk," "in trouble," or "lost."
Creative thinking helped each of these famous - and everyday
people - overcome obstacles to discover their Element.

I waited until the breakfast was almost over and asked Sir Ken to sign my own copy of his book.

I then sprung another request on him.

"Could you please draw me a teacup?"

I handed him a piece of my favorite Italian Fabriano paper and a pen. Much to my delight, he picked up the paper and dashed out a bold little cup of tea. I smiled.

Most adults freeze when I ask them to draw for me.

Sir Ken Robinson did not disappoint.
True to the spirit of his work, he was fearless and creative!

After he was finished, I added: "Please - sign it." And he did.

I shared with him that this was to be a collaboration.
I've been doing this for years with those I have met along the journey - especially those who say they CAN'T draw. With a gentle invitation to draw a teacup, (my "informal research" in the past 25 years has proven that EVERYONE can create a teacup - or something that is teacup-ish!)
everyone has been able to "make their mark."

I took the pen, opened my watercolors and set to work. I drew around Sir Ken's teacup creating a gallery - and a cast of admirers. A final splash of color and our collaboration was complete.


"The Element Gallery" By Sir Ken Robinson & Peter H. Reynolds, 2010


Mónica said...

Thanks for share this cute cup of tea. i like very much, make me smile this morning. Hugs and congrats for Sir Ken Robinson and you :)

Unknown said...

Oh my goodness, I LOVE the collaboration and reading your comments on your informal teacup research. Inspires me to sketch one of my own, and start an informal gallery.....

Anna M. Lewis said...

Peter, Love it!
And, yes, I agree. Everyone (and especially every child) can draw!

Peter H. Reynolds said...

Thank you! Please do feel free to join the "project" and make a teacup - with a friend (or two) if that inspires you - and be sure to sign - and post. I am building a Teacup Project Gallery soon to start collecting them from folks around the world. : )

Anonymous said...

Great post, great work, I'm glad you made him sign it. Glene Keane says the same thing even to artists, always sign you work own it! Very inspiring.

Michelle Henninger said...

Teacup gallery! What a great idea! And good of Sir Ken to draw away ... it's a lovely teacup!

Michelle Henninger said...

You've inspired me to create my own teacup. [] My girls (8 and 6) are working on theirs as I type. Thanks for the great idea! Can't wait to see your gallery!

cris said...

that was amazing and inspiring! :)

Jason Everett said...

You and Sir Ken ROCK! I was tickled when I saw this post. Just delighted to see your two worlds colide in this manner. Way to go and thanks for posting this creative work.


Adriana Hollenbeck said...

You are birds of a feather! I can't imagine how exciting that conversation was!

Anonymous said...

You inspire me to be a better teacher, artist, mom & everyday good person...thank you!

Jamie Lee said...

Love it!!! this blog brings a smile on my face :)

Peter te Riele said...

Two of my international educational heroes connected by a teacup. Interesting stuff.
I wonder if Ken Robinson read your books, if not he should. There is a lot of similarity in The dot & the element.