December 15, 2015
I’m excited to announce the release of the ZIG ZAG Creativity Cards!
The card deck has 48 cards, and each one has a different creativity exercise. There are also four cards that describe how to use the cards alone, in groups, and when you’re facilitating a workshop.
The cards are perfect for everyday use. You can do each technique in a few minutes, and use the cards throughout your day. The card deck comes in a hard plastic case so you can take it everywhere (cardboard boxes fall apart pretty fast). It’s time for a new set of creativity techniques that’s practical for everyday use, with exercises that are grounded in the latest creativity research.
The 48 techniques are taken from the book ZIG ZAG: The Surprising Path to Greater Creativity. They’re grouped into the eight stages of the creative process:
- Ask: how to ask the right question
- Learn: prepare your mind
- Look: spot the answers around you
- Play: imagine possible worlds
- Think: how to have great ideas
- Fuse: how to combine ideas
- Choose: make good ideas even better
- Make: make your ideas visible
The 8 stages are based on creativity research (for a summary of the research, see my creativity textbook, Explaining Creativity.) ZIG ZAG is a practical, hands-on application of that research.
Here are two sample cards, with their techniques. If you’d like to see more cards, the card deck web site has a Daily Creativity Card that changes every day.
ASK is the first step toward greater creativity. Each of the 8 stages has its own color, and has six cards numbered 1 to 6. The six ASK cards help you make sure that you’ve identified the right problem. (This one is number 5.) Often when you’re stumped, and you can’t think of a solution, it turns out you’re asking the wrong question. (Kudos to artist Robert Cori for the illustrations, and to Nyla Smith for the graphic design.)
The third step is LEARN, preparing yourself for creativity by filling your mind with a variety of information. I love to learn a little bit about lots of different things! It doesn’t take long to learn to juggle, or to play the harmonica. In the past year, I’ve been teaching myself how to repair old accordions! (And yes, I’m still a dilettante, you shouldn’t trust me with your accordion.)