habit zero #035

the challenge


Today we are going to play with a very special Prism from the ReMix Prism collection.

A ReMix Prism takes different types of Seeds or other Prisms and mix them together to create an extra-special creative challenge.

The Prism we are playing with today is the Shape a Character Prism. Here’s the deal: you get a ReShape Seed — a Seed with a graphical shape instead of a title, and a Character Seed. The assignment is to write a description of the shape as the character would… and then explore and capture an Insight inspired by what we wrote.

Here’s the two Seeds for this challenge.

my insight


This strange shape is a deformed sand clock floating in the air. But it isn’t just a regular sand clock used to measure time. It’s a Thoughts Clock. It contains one’s thoughts drifting from the real world to the surreal world.

Once the upper container becomes empty, you are totally immersed in your dream-world. Until the sand clock turns over and then you wake up into reality.

When I first saw the ReShape Seed, I immediately thought of a sand clock. When Dali came into the picture, I thought of the liquid clocks — a recurrent motive in his paintings. The result was the idea of a deformed sand clock.

But I wanted more than that. I wanted to recreate the sense of surrealism or even address it directly. This is how the idea of the thoughts-clock was born — a device that measures the ratio between your presence in the real world and your presence in the surreal dream world.

With that in mind, I looked around me for an Insight I can capture based on the description I wrote. I found two light bulbs and they were the perfect match for the thoughts-clock idea. What better object is there to represent thoughts and ideas?

I placed the two light bulbs on a piece of red paper to form a sand-clock like shape, and this is what I got:



Any creative exploration can be (and should be) playful. We are more creative when we are engaged in a game. But the Shape a Character Prism might be the most playful Prism we worked with till today. When you have to ditch your point of view and play the role of someone else, you have no other option than to be playful.

What’s interesting about the process I went through today is that the final visual Insight was there in my home just waiting to the right moment to be captured. I could have thought about this visual metaphor long ago. But I didn’t until I tried to imagine what Salvador Dali would have done with the strange shape I played with.

It is that chain of events — this connection created inside my brain — that never cease to surprise me. We call it “a creative process”, but no one can effectively describe it as a repeatable process. It’s more of an occurrence than a process.

But that this creative spark results from some kind of “magical” occurrence does not mean we should leave it to chance. Triggers like the one we played with today enable this brain-process and increase its effect.

mental notes


  • Use triggers that will increase the chances of a creative spark.
  • Look at the world from different perspectives. Try to see it as someone else would.

now it is your turn… be creative!



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