Chronicles Blog

Women, Girls, Innovation, and Art

Light-bulb-momentHave you ever wanted to join forces with another business or organization to satisfy a goal — whether it’s for a marketing project, for outreach, for a cause, or all three? Cheri Lippmann did just that.

When she realized that the next First Friday art tour in Santa Cruz would coincide with the International Day of the Girl — with a 2013 theme of Innovating for Girls’ Education — she had a light-bulb moment. What if her women’s group, Dining For Women, could bring art and innovation to the girls of the local community? What a bright light that would be.

Here’s what happened in the space of a week: Lippmann called her neighbor, Dave Britton, co-founder of the MakersFactory. His downtown educational space teaches students of all ages to use new technology for 3D printing, modeling, animation, robotics, and video games. Then she asked her friend, Kathleen Crocetti, if she was free the following Friday. Crocetti is an award-winning art educator and mosaic muralist whose students’ work is on every bridge in Santa Cruz.

With an array of teachers, volunteers from the three Santa Cruz chapters of Dining For Women, and girls from ages 2 on up, the educational event and reception at MakersFactory attracted more than 250 adults and children. It was a perfect merging of passions for Lippmann, who says she truly believes her organization’s philosophy, “We value education as the fuel that feeds our commitment and purposeful passion as the driving force of our advocacy.”

Girls and grownups learned about basic electrical concepts with Play-Doh, put together cutout dinosaurs, drew and colored figures. They also learned about tools like the 6-foot extrusion printer, which uses powder to print a three-dimensional object, and the laser cutter, which burns a path through a piece of wood or cardboard to make small statues.

Crocetti displayed and shared her innovative fashion art piece, which was modeled recently in a sold-out fashionARTS show. Many of her students, past and present, showed up to get a closer look at her creation and to discover the mysteries of the MakersFACTORY.

Eleven-year-old Ellie Readdie won a drawing for a $100 MakersFactory gift certificate, which she’ll use for laser etching and 3D printing classes.

And Lippmann? Next year, she says, will be the third-annual International Day of the Girl. Whatever the theme, there’s a good chance she’ll have another light-bulb moment.

International Day of the Girl: “Innovating for Girls’ Education” from Chronicles In Motion on Vimeo.



“Must-Have” Online Video

The prognosticators are out in force, with 2014 just around the corner. Will the feds fix the bungled healthcare website? Will MySpace come back to life? Will miniature tigers become the new trendy pet?

I’d say a safer bet is the prediction that online video will take another giant leap and become a “must-have” item on the website of every business, big and small.

Why? More and more people are watching commercial videos, giving businesses an unprecedented opportunity to attract prospects and loyal followers. Videos make sites easier to find on search engines and drive traffic. And because people watch them, they’re a great way for you to connect with your customers-to-be, establish authority, gain trust, share information, and establish yourself as a thought leader.

If you’re a business owner who isn’t yet promoting your brand with video, a video bio is a good place to start. You can do it before the year is over. Check out my video below for five tips to get going — and get ahead of the pack!