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Name tags. Yarn. Markers. Glitter. Stickers. Scrabble pieces.

Individually, these things are just things. They’re pretty typical. But when you put all these things on a table and tell more than 150 creatives to “make a name tag,” you get something atypical.

Something atypical took place on June 22nd at Arnold Worldwide. And the CreativeMornings/Boston community created it. No, it wasn’t just the name tags. It was the energy and spirit of a group of creative people thinking about, discussing, and using Craft.

Guest speaker Wade Devers (ECD/Managing Partner with Arnold Worldwide) was thoughtful, hilarious, and genuine as he spoke about doing something familiar with the unfamiliar and how difficult great craft can be.

Wade showed a clip from a Jack Daniels commercial he created that talked about how a town isn’t the buildings, but a town is the people. Watching this clip made me realize that CreativeMornings/Boston isn’t the name tags, or the yarn, or the glitter, or the beautiful spaces we gather in on a monthly basis.

CreativeMornings/Boston is you.

Hola CMBOS Friends!  Sophia Moon, here!  🙂  Welcome to #100DaysofCMBOS, which will coincide with #The100DayProject, a free global art project starting on Tuesday, April 3rd. This global event is in its fifth year, co-facilitated by Elle Luna and Lindsay Jean Thomson. Anyone can start a 100 Day project at any time, but there’s something magical about being a part of a global movement with people from all over the world committing to the same 100 days of doing a small creative action.

You can watch a Live Q&A Session with the global co-hosts to learn more about the project and how to select the right project for you.  The co-facilitators encourage smaller, local groups to come together and support each other in this project and I couldn’t contain my excitement at the thought of sharing this experience with our amazing community of creatives right here in Boston. So, let’s do this! Are you in?!?!

Here’s how you can get started:

 Sign up for the weekly newsletter h2 from Elle and Lindsay.

Follow the global facilitators @elleluna and @lindsayjeanthomson as well as @creativemornings.boston and I’ll be our #100DaysofCMBOS facilitator, so feel free to follow/tag me in your projects as well @iamsophiamoon. I can’t wait to see what you do!

Choose your 100 Day action – You’ll do this action every day for 100 days, posting each instance of 100 on your Instagram account. Keep the action simple and manageable. For inspiration, browse #The100DayProject.

Announce your 100 Day Project – Tag your Instagram with #The100DayProject as well as #100DaysofCMBOS and add your own unique project hashtag (so that all of your posts will sit nicely together). Include both hashtags on every post!

Start April 3rd – Create and post every day until July 11th. It’s okay if you miss a day! Keep going. Reading this after April 3rd? Any day is a good day to start #The100DayProject!

We will plan fun and interesting ways to connect with fellow 100Day’ers in the CMBoston community so stay tuned. Get creative. Let’s have fun and support each other! Questions? Feel free to Email me.

Today is Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, a holiday originating from the Toltec people of Mexico. While it has become trendy (albeit problematic) to dress as a sugar skull for Halloween, there’s more to this holiday. It is traditionally about celebrating the dead. It also falls on the same day as All Souls Day in Catholicism. How has this cultural tradition influenced your designs? Check out this link for more inspiration. And the video for what the holiday means for teens currently in prison.


This month’s theme is #CMdeath  How does this theme apply to your design work?

NEWS NEWS NEWS!

We’ve been nominated for Bostinno’s 2016 50 on Fire, which recognizes the city’s innovators and disruptors. Now in its fifth year, the awards show will be hosted at the Moakley Courthouse on the night of Dec. 7th to celebrate the finalists and winners. Interested in attending? You can buy tickets here (use the promo code CreativeMornings for a 20% off).

Gautam Narula’s Guide to Activism

May’s speaker Gautaum Narula is the award-winning author of Remain Free, a memoir that documents his friendship with death row inmate Troy Davis. He has compiled a list of resources for education and action around the criminal justice system. 

Education

  • Just Mercy by Brian Stevenson gives a great broad overview of the problems in our criminal justice system. ­­Stevenson is a lawyer and founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, a nonprofit that provides legal representation prisoners who may have been wrongfully convicted, given unfair trials, or cannot afford legal representation. The book goes through a series of cases Stevenson worked on in the past three decades that highlight the kind of injustices (particularly against the poor and racial minorities) that continue to occur today. 
  • The first season of the Serial podcast follows the story of Adnan Syed, a high school student questionably convicted of murdering another student and sentenced to life in prison. Not only does it provide a personal look into a potentially wrongful conviction, it also highlights some important problems: the increased power of prosecutors via plea bargaining, the effects of poor legal representation, etc.
  • It would be remiss of me not to shamelessly promote my own book, Remain Free, which follows the Troy Davis case and discusses the death penalty, how race and socioeconomic status affect outcomes in the justice system, and the personal toll our justice system takes on the people and families involved. All the profits from sales will be donated to the Innocence Project (see below), and the book can be read for free online at www.remainfree.com
  • The Innocence Project is a non-profit that works to free wrongfully convicted individuals through DNA testing, and has information on their website about what causes wrongful convictions. They also discuss the policy and legislative work they do (in addition to providing legal representation) to prevent innocent people from being convicted in the first place. 
  • For those specifically interested in the death penalty, Amnesty International’s Abolish the Death Penalty campaign is a good starting point. This campaign transformed Troy Davis from an unknown death row inmate in Georgia to the most well-known death row inmate in history. 

Action

  • Donate to the organizations mentioned above. 
  • Volunteer: Amnesty International is particularly good place to volunteer, because at its core AI is a volunteer organization so they’re built around volunteer action. You can start by getting in touch with your local field office (in this case, the one in Boston) and Amnesty Local Group (Amnesty 133 in Cambridge/Somerville). There are lots of friendly people in AI who will be happy to help you get started if you’re new to this. And if you’re into rallies and protests, AI can get you into that too. 
  • Lobby government officials: Massachusetts is definitely ahead of the curve (compared to the rest of the states) on these kinds of issues, but there’s always room for improvement. Stay educated and aware of any bills relating to law enforcement and criminal justice, and make your voice heard if there’s something you don’t like. If you have friends or relatives in other states that aren’t doing quite as well as Massachusetts in regards to criminal justice reform, encourage them to call their elected officials to pressure them to change the laws. Amnesty International, The Innocence Project, etc. will often have petitions you can sign as well.
  • Share the knowledge you’ve gained with as many people as you can. The most enduring change occurs from the bottom up, and that means writing about these issues and talking to people about them. That’s why I wrote Remain Free and speak to awesome groups of people like the folks at CreativeMornings Boston!

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You can follow Gautam on Twitter and on his personal blog.

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