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Chaos, My new found Friend!

Jallikattu is the word of the month in Chennai. Before January 2017, this word just meant the sport played during Pongal in Tamil Nadu. But today, this word for many means Positivity, Strength, unity, Protest, Victory and Chaos. Personally, I do not know which word to associate myself with and I am nonchalant about this whole issue. I assumed the protests to end on Sunday (22nd Jan) as a fresh week was ahead and also the news articles were claiming that protesters were asked to leave that night! I am positive that the breed I belonged to, assumed the protests would end and planned their Monday just the way I did!

I had a school visit scheduled for Monday and I left the Report Bee office around 10:30 AM with Pallavi.  We managed to reach our destination well before the expected time and had a successful visit. I love visiting schools just for their infrastructure and feel.

As we came out of our meeting from the school, we heard about the protests being continued in the city. The well-organized silent protests had suddenly become violent! We got news that the ice house police station vehicles was burnt and there was complete chaos in the city!

Obviously, reading news like this, Pallavi and I wanted to head back to office immediately! We booked a cab and left for office. The cab driver, was an active participant of the protests. He had an A4 Sheet of paper stuck in his car saying “I SUPPORT JALLIKATTU” with a picture of the bull. On reading the news and looking at his active participation, I started having a conversation about what was happening. Our conversations were constantly interrupted with calls coming in, giving us updates on what was happening in each area and families asking us to get home soon.  With one of the calls the driver got, I overheard him saying he was heading straight back home! (I had to find out if he stayed near Kotturpuram. Just to make sure!)

Me: “Anna, where do you stay?”

Driver: “Ponneri! You guys get down here! I am going home.”

Me: (attempt of creating a sentimental dialogue) “Anna, 2 girls travelling alone. We do not know this area also. Only you can drop us safely. Please reconsider and drop us!”

Driver: “No Madam. I need to get home! I am sorry!”

Me: “Alright. Please drop us at the nearby bus stand atleast. Incase, we do not get another cab, we can take the bus back!”

We managed to book another cab and reach office safely. On our way, we spotted a lot of route diversions causing traffic. Protests were happening in all areas! I have never felt unsafe in Chennai. But, that day at 1:00 PM in the afternoon I did!

I decided to leave home as soon as I reached office. Manasa (a new joinee in Report Bee) and I decided to walk it back home.

Walking back home I noticed that 100’s of people were stuck on the road, waiting patiently, not knowing what to do. The exact same situation I faced few hours back while coming back from the school visit. Just as how I felt unsafe, I realised that all these people waiting will be feeling the same too! I decided to spread some cheer and positivity as I was passing by and do my bit to ease tension. Here are the things I did on my way:

  • Since I love to talk, I stopped and chatted with as many people as I could. My favourite of the lot was meeting an aunt and uncle waiting to go to Thiruvanmiyur. (Something told me they were on their way to see a potential bride/groom. Don’t ask me why! :)) Their car was stuck right in the middle. So, while I was talking to them, I told them to step out and get some tea from the nearby tea shop, in case they got hungry . They thought I was really sweet and cute suggesting that. I didn’t know how to tell them I was serious!
  • I met a lot of my friends on the way. Funny way to catch up with long lost people! 🙂 I met my very own class teacher who taught accounts in class 12. She used to be one of my favourites! The joy I had while meeting her on the way was such a happy moment for me!
  • We spotted so many vehicles still finding their way to Kotturpuram to head to various areas (Adyar, airport mainly). Manasa and I managed to get as many people as we could to reroute and find another way. They all thanked us and were grateful for the updates!

Yes, Chennai was chaotic on 23rd January. Yes, I did feel unsafe. But I learnt that given any situation there is always some positivity that can be created and I am happy my new friend taught me that.

NON CREATIVE MEET 6 – THUMB PRINT ART

Author: Jeevan Siva

Location: New Office

Time : 4.30 PM

It was our first NC meet at the new office. This time, I decided to use less tools as my belief in art has always been on tools like pen, pencil, brush, mouse and marker. As a result, the confidence has always been dependent on the type of tools I get to use. Using only the thumb restricts many forms and I want to know how it works. Thumb art is usually for kids in kindergarten to enhance hand coordination. Here I decided to check the extent of imagination in adults. After 10 minutes of brainstorming where and when we use our thumb, we started the activity. The answers varied from using a smartphone to screen recognition pattern and lot more.

No one had used their thumb to do any art. With the shape of a thumb, the art form flows along with creativity and thinking skills. The possibility of creating anything you can imagine makes it more exciting.

IMG-20150829-WA0006  1st NC meet at collaboration room at new office.

What you need :

  •     A sheet of paper
  •     Black marker/ gel pen
  •     Any color paint
  •     Thumbs and fingers

It’s quick. It’s simple. It’s Creative.

Many of them preferred to check online. While few tried replicating, few tried reproducing. And some of them took the influence alone and tried to bring that intensity in their work.

And here is the outcome of Thumb art!

IMG-20150830-WA0005Outcome of Thumb Art!

A man flying with a pool of balloons, two little bees, monkey and butterflies, shiva, a colour palette, a couple of trees, reindeer(s) pulling the sledge, dogs etc.

Unlike adults, kids have an extensive imagination. They don’t mind the risk factor. With adults, the pressure and fear factor pops up in all stages that we don’t enjoy the art or its process. Whereas we compete and submit to the pressure. This I believe can be changed over time.

Review:

Suganthi : The activity was new to me and I usually like to learn as much as possible through the NC meets. Everyone felt awesome and had different experience while making an art using their own finger instead of any tool. Though I did a simple bird, It came out really well. Thanks for the interesting activity.

Jack : I’ve heard of thumb art, but this is the first time I got to try it. Wow! What many things can be done with the thumb compared to a brush!!

After giving it a try, now I find the brush a little difficult to use as fingers seem to be more comfortable and give a personal touch to the art Thanks to Jeevan for bringing in the new form! Cheers!

IMG-20150830-WA0008Team participated at NC-6

 

Beyond Expectations! – 5th Non Creative Meet

Team activity and discussions
Team activity and discussions

Finally, the Card flipped to me – Naan Creative Jack!

I am happy to represent the 5th NC meet. Firstly, I’ll give a quick overview of what is Non (Naan) – Creative.

A Bunch of like-minded People at work believed in the creativity hidden in each and every one of us. We thought we should do something to bring it out. So, we started a club in Report Bee for all the ‘Non creative’ bees out here. We usually have assumptions about ‘creative people’ and ‘non-creative people’. We tend to think that ‘creative people’ are a naturally gifted species while non-creative people are not.

To break all the myths and to learn from the common, we kick started with this idea.

Who are we?
DanielJackJeevanJivaKaranSathish, Shanmuga VelSuganthi (Organizer) and Yesvanth.

The idea was simple. We wanted to search for and bring back the creative child in every one of us whom we had lost somewhere along the way. We wanted to establish a platform to unleash our childhood craziness.

How?

It was planned that we would organize an activity every month for all the interested ‘kids’ in here. Each month a person from the team would organize/co-ordinate the session while the rest of the participants learn from him/her.

As part of this, we had organized 4 NC activities, 1. Quilling, 2. Stone Art, 3. Oil painting – crafts & 4. Art from Waste paper . Every activity was unique and significant. So, we thought the 5th should also be something different from the previous 4.

 

NC – 5

This is how Jack turned into a ‘Creative Jack’! Yes. I was the co-ordinator for NC-5.

Usually we let know the participants about the activity beforehand so that they come prepared. But this time I kept it a secret. I did not even give a hint about the activity. All I said was, to keep themselves available on the following Friday ( July 31, 2015).

Our usual meeting place for the activity is a conference room in the Ameex premise. It’s a well structured office space with comfortable chairs and tables. But this time I wanted to go to a different place, wanted my team to explore a new environment. I did not want the same kind of activity. So I took them to a new venue. And we went there carrying nothing with us. Every one of them was eager to know what the activity was.

I took them to the new building of our office. This is where Report Bee was going to move in a few days. The new office was a very old Duplex Villa that needed to be shaped into a working office space.  I took the team around the entire half-finished office filled with dust. I let them take a good view of it. Then I divided the participants into 5 different teams and gave them the blue print of the new office space with these as specifications.

Team names and the list:

  1. Collaboration Room (Karan Jiva)
  2. Main entrance (Yesvanth & Suganya G)
  3. Kitchen (Hari Sathish)
  4. Terrace (Shanmuga Vel Harish)
  5. Outdoor Recreation area (Danny Suganthi)

I told them to imagine that they were the interior designers for the designated rooms. (Ex: Karan & Jiva for Collaboration Room) I asked each team to think, be creative and visualize the office space and make it employee friendly. I gave them 30 minutes of time to finish this activity.
The only other rule for the activity was that it should be beyond our expectations.

Each and every team came up with their own imagination and concept. By the end of this activity, each team had to explain their visualization to other team members. We were forced to think beyond our limitations. Since none of us are interior designers by profession, everyone had to kindle their creativity and imagination to finish the task.Real user needed design flow out!

Team A: Karan & Jiva | Collaboration Room

Concept by Karan & Jiva
Concept by Karan & Jiva

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Team B: Yesvanth & Suganya | Main Entrance

Concept by Yesvanth & Suganya
Concept by Yesvanth & Suganya

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Team C: Harish & Sathish | Kitchen

Concept by Sathish Jain & Harish
Concept by Sathish Jain & Harish

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Team D: Shanmuga Vel & Hari | Terrace

Concept by Shanmuga vel & Hari
Concept by Shanmuga vel & Hari

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Team E: Danil & Suganthi | Outdoor Recreation area

Team E
Concept by Daniel & suganthi

Often, the participants are the key takers. But here I’m the real key taker. The ideas shared by the participants helped me in brainstorming with our official interior designers. The plan is partially implemented and we’ve now moved into the new office. I can see happy people at work. I’ve got a new perspective on what people expect their workspaces to be, other than being just an office building.

Thanks for reading my blog. Please feel free to comment and encourage us.

Team  selfie at the endTeam selfie at the end