Kipaya Kapiga is this month’s Creative Mornings MugShot! Kipaya is an Austin-based UX designer, storyteller, swing dancer, hot sauce collector, aspiring occultist, and occasional raffle contest winner. When he’s not designing and writing, you can usually find him dancing, reading, or playing board games.


What’s one thing you’ve been inspired by lately?

I went to the Design Jam in May hosted by Social Good.us and the topic was Solving for Homelessness, specifically, developing temporary storage solutions for the homeless. We were split up into five groups and went around with stickies and markers generating ideas in areas like cost, ownership, physical features, etc. The facilitators really pushed us to think about how our ideas could meet real needs and help our users. It was great to get together and be with other designer and design-curious people. 

Something that stood out to me was that some people who were writing and putting up as many ideas as they could think of and then there were people who were much more deliberative and have longer conversations, and despite the different approaches, you could see how they came to some really interesting conclusions. When I went into it, I didn’t realize what a big deal it was for people experiencing homelessness to have a place for their stuff, but it affects how you can move around and what you can do like applying for jobs or keeping documents safe.  

What’s one way you feel like you’re weird and how does that inspire you?

I would wager that I’m the only Kipaya in Texas and I’ve gone through phases where I’m happy to have an uncommon name and appreciate the interest other people show in it and me. But there have also been times when I just go by Kip to make it easier and avoid that conversation completely. It gets really tiring keep hearing “where are you from?” and “what does it mean?” and “how do you pronounce it?” But I’m feeling pretty good about it these days. I’ve found a way to have some fun with it because now I tell people who are worried about mispronouncing it to just think of a papaya. I like to riff on it and say it sounds similar to papaya and, you know, it has a good mouthfeel and is equally refreshing. I think I’m inspired by it because it’s taught me that you can always find common ground when explaining something and have a little fun with it. 


Where do you go to get inspired?

It might be kind of cliche, but I watch movies. I really enjoy stories and in a lot of ways, UX design is about stories. Stories that organizations and companies tell themselves and others about the good they’re doing and what they offer the world and the people who come to them and what they need. For any organization, there’s always some story arc of someone needing help with a certain area of his life and then this company helps him and, in the end, he’s better educated and better off than he was before. Besides the storytelling, movies are really interesting visually from their lighting choices to their costume choices to their title credits. I really like horror movies, but those might be more inspiration of what not to do. But that’s what makes them so great at defying conventions and surprising audiences.

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(Photo by Manny Pandya)

LET’S GO ON A FIELD TRIP!
We’ve got a great FieldTrip planned for you this Friday, 7/19.

TRASH TO TREASURE: Designing Something Beautiful Even When Your Raw Materials are Garbage
As the saying goes, play the cards you are dealt. Jess Moss with projekt202 will lead us through how to find solutions to UX problems, even without traditional user research. Please RSVP here

Thanks to Lazarus Brewing Co. for hosting us.

This FieldTrip was made possible through a partnership with AIGA Austin. It’s the second of four events we’re co-producing in 2019. We’re excited to bring our fellow creatives from both communities together to learn new skills.

Want to host or share your talents on a FieldTrip?
Just fill out this form to apply and we’ll be in touch. 

Want to be one of the first to find out about next month’s FieldTrips?
You should subscribe to our local newsletter. (Look for the signup button on the right hand side of the page.)

“HEY, WHAT A MINUTE, WHAT ARE FIELDTRIPS?”
#CMfieldtrips are a monthly series of small group discussions, tours, or workshops held to spread the creative magic happening around Austin. Space is limited to facilitate open conversation and new connections, so you must RSVP via our site to attend. Most of our FieldTrips are free, but we may ask for a suggested donation to cover materials for some of them. 

(Each month, we give folks who were on the waitlist for our most recent talk a two-hour head start to register. And then registration opens up to the rest of our #CMATX community.)

July’s global theme END will be discussed by Michael Manning.

Hosted at ZACH Theatre on Friday, 7/12. Details here.

Say thanks to our partners this month: High Note!

And extra cheers to this month’s beverage partners: Cuvée Coffee and Big Swig Water!

Use these hashtags at the end of all your social media posts:  #CMend & #CMATX 

Does your business want to feel the love of our creative community? If you’d like to help support CreativeMornings/Austin financially or in kind, please email us at austin (at) creative mornings (dot) (com).

Our global theme for July is END. It was chosen by our Rio de Janeiro chapter and illustrated by Isadora Zeferino. 

Ends are unique opportunities in disguise. They allow us to make meaning out of our past relationships, experiences, projects, and seasons in life.

On the other hand, beginnings are romanticized and energize us to envision all the impressive things we will do. Headlines celebrate the latest rising startup or ‘it’ destinations travelers must see.

But reaching the end of something can also carry meaningful joy. Author Wes Moore once talked about the difference between our jobs and our work. Moore said, “Your goal should never be to start something. Your goal should be to end things.”

When we truly fulfill an ending, it reflects growth and real change. We can create projects to end loneliness, walk away from empty relationships, change habits, or choose a different career trajectory.

The secret about ‘the end’ is that it actually contains countless possibilities.

(Photo by Sandy Carson)

Meet our most recent #CMugshot, Mia Savage.  Mia is a designer and illustrator who is currently collaborating with her writing partner on their first children’s book, “Where Do You Go?,” which they expect to submit to publishers later this year. She spends her free time traveling, cooking, and trying to manage her crafting addiction. Her hobby is hobbies.

1. What’s one thing you’ve been inspired by lately?

My creative and business partner just moved down the street from me, so that’s been really inspiring. We always worked long-distance, and sharing a space has been a game-changer.  We’re able to bounce ideas off each other and get projects off the ground much faster than before. We’re in the middle of working on a children’s book together!

2. What’s one way you’re weird and how does that inspire you?

I’ve worked in the creative space for a long time—I studied industrial design and taught art for years—but I’m not very confident in my drawing skills! I have this mental block where I think, I’m not someone who draws! In fact, I’ll do everything I can to not draw. But this aversion has actually inspired me with my children’s book project. As little confidence as I have in my drawing, I feel very confident when I’m making physical things, so I’ve decided to take a completely different approach for the book illustrations by creating handmade dioramas. Every illustration will be its own miniature set piece that I will then photograph. As soon as I flipped to that medium, I sat down—no sketching, no planning, no reference—just a pile of materials in front of me and everything started to click. Things come together so easily. You’re working with polymer clay and all of a sudden, you’re holding a tiny toilet! (Our book is about all the places people go to the bathroom.) It’s so inspiring to unlock a new direction that feels right.

3. Where do you go to get inspired?

I like to go into my stash of stuff and do something different—sewing, linocut, gardening, you name it. I go through waves of inspiration. I find that I don’t need inspiration for the work itself. I need inspiration to stay motivated, to network, to go after commissions so I can keep doing the creative stuff that comes more easily to me because I’m inspired by everything.

CM Profile | Instagram | Book Instagram | Etsy

LET’S GO ON A FIELD TRIP!
We’ve got two #CMfieldtrips planned for you this Friday, 6/7.

FREELANCE FINANCES: HOW TO GET ORGANIZED AND GET PAID

Join us Impact Hub (Lamar) for a workshop with Kara Perez of Bravely. Get your finances in check so you can get back to doing what you do best. RSVP

SONGWRITING 101 WITH MANDY ROWDEN

Join us for a morning of creativity through song with singer/songwriter Mandy Rowden, founder of Girl Guitar. Learn the basics of marrying words with music. No guitar skills necessary! RSVP

Big thanks to our #CMfieldtrips coffee partner: Chameleon Cold Brew.

WANT TO HOST A FIELDTRIP? APPLY HERE.

Want to be one of the first to find out about next month’s FieldTrips? You should subscribe to our newsletter. (Look for the “Austin Newsletter” signup button on the right hand side of the page.)

“HEY, WHAT A MINUTE, WHAT ARE FIELDTRIPS?”

#CMfieldtrips are a monthly series of small group discussions, tours, or workshops held to spread the creative magic happening around Austin. Space is limited to facilitate open conversation and new connections, so you must RSVP via our site to attend. Most of our FieldTrips are free, but we may ask for a suggested donation to cover materials for some of them.

(Each month, we give folks who were on the waitlist of our most recent talk a two-hour head start to register. And then they open up to the rest of our #CMATX community.)

June’s global theme WONDER will be discussed by Christian Helms.

Hosted at Red Velvet Events on Friday, 6/14. Details here.

Say thanks to our partners this month: Accomplice and MealPal

And extra cheers to our coffee partner: Cuvée Coffee!

Use these hashtags like pixie dust to make your posts more magical:  #CMwonder & #CMATX 

Do you want to see your business featured among these amazing companies - and feel the love of our creative community?
If you want to help support CreativeMornings/Austin financially or in kind, please email us at austin (at) creative mornings (dot) (com).

Our global theme for June is Wonder. It was chosen by our Copenhagen chapter and illustrated by Rune Fisker.

Our sense of wonder is the code for tapping into our most creative selves. It enables us to expand our horizons and encounter parallel universes that haven’t been explored yet.

According to the classical Greek philosopher Socrates, “Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.” By drawing us out of our typical patterns, wonderment reconnects us with our ability to marvel at new and beautiful things.

We all have the capacity for wonder; but why do we lose sight of it?

As our lives get busier, we tend to streamline our schedules and relationships to become more efficient. We want to know what will happen and when it will happen. But extraordinary things occur if we make room for the unexpected.

When we leave space in our plans, we create magical conditions for our imagination and thoughts to collide with one another. And it is from these sparks that our best ideas are born.

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(Photo by Sandy Carson.)

Meet our most recent #CMugshot, Kate Abel! Kate is a reference librarian at the Austin Central Library, where she loves being involved with the Zine Collection, Seed Library and apl unbound: sin fronteras book bike. She spends her free time biking, gardening, and swimming.

What’s one thing you’ve been inspired by lately?

Something I’ve been inspired by recently is our partnership with the Central Texas Seed Library and the circulating seed collection that we opened in January on the 6th floor of the Central Library. People can check out up to four seed packets at a time and if they’re successful at growing plants from the seeds, they can bring us new seeds to add to the next generation for people to check out. With this program, we promote sustainability and self-reliance and create a sense of community around gardening in Austin.

What’s one way you feel weird and how does that inspire you?

I’m a little bit weird in that I bike everywhere I go. It’s inspiring because it’s good for human health and for the planet. We hear every day on the news about climate change and declining human health and it’s easy to feel like we can’t possibly overcome these problems as individuals. Biking is a great small step for me to do to personally contribute, be visible and encourage others as well. For anyone who wants to get started with biking, there are a lot of group rides you can join in Austin so that you have fun and feel comfortable traveling on two wheels.

Where do you go to get inspired?

I feel really inspired in my own garden. I love planting seeds and watching the daily growth and all of the changes. It’s wonderful to be able to harvest your own salad or ingredients for a smoothie, and it’s as fresh and local as can be. It just feels so good to nurture the garden and let the garden nurture you.

May’s global theme PRESERVE will be discussed by Brandon Berdoll.

Hosted at Wolf House on Friday, 5/24. Details here.

Say thanks to our partner this month: R/GA!

And extra cheers to our coffee partner: Cuvée Coffee!

Do you want to see your business featured among these amazing companies while feeling the love of our creative community? If you want to help support CreativeMornings/Austin financially or in kind, please email us at austin (at) creative mornings (dot) (com).

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