How can you prepare for the unexpected good? R. Eric Thomas, award-winning playwright and humorist, offered his insights into the serendipitous in this May 2017 talk. All photos taken by Steve Weinik.

“Love is the answer to all things,” he says. But how do we create it? In April 2017, Ed Tettemer took us “beyond logic” in an inspirational talk on love and success.

As we explored the taboo in March 2017, web developer Courtney Wilburn took to the stage at the Center / Architecture + Design to discuss how marginalized communities use technology to organize and make their voices heard. All photos taken by Steve Weinik.

“The mystery is that the past is often just as clouded as the future,” says Justin Duerr. This visual artist, musician, and writer has explored the mysteries of the Toynbee tiles and obscure cartoonist Herbert Crowley, and in January 2017, he helped the CreativeMornings Philadelphia community learn more about mystery. Photos taken by Steve Weinik.

In December 2016, CreativeMornings Philadelphia explored sound with Tony Award-winning sound designer Robert Kaplowitz. His talk gave us all a new perspective on the vibrations that give our lives meaning and context. Photos taken by Steve Weinik.

CreativeMornings Philadelphia explored and celebrated fantasy in November with Heather Ujiie. As an artist, designer, and educator at Moore College of Art and Design, Heather has channeled elements of fantasy into her creative and innovative work, while also maintaining a connection with reality. Photos taken by Steve Weinik.

In October, CreativeMornings Philadelphia explored transparency with Conrad Benner, founder and editor of StreetsDept.com, a Philly-based photo-blog that documents and celebrates street art, graffiti, and urban exploration. In his talk, he discussed the challenges of documenting and celebrating an illegal art form, how keeping an honest dialog with his readers helped him to grow his blog and social media platforms to become one of the most followed individuals in Philadelphia, and how working openly with advertisers allowed him to turn his labor of love into a career.

Photo credit: Steve Weinik

In September, we channeled the magical. Magic is about adding layers of wonder and surprise in our lives. In Philadelphia, Mike Smith – the Smith half of Smith & Diction – gave an inspiring talk about how doing something uncomfortable can lead to something incredible.

More than 150 CreativeMornings chapters worldwide took a walk on the “weird” side in August! Weirdness widens the edges of the status quo, and if we allow it, it adds beauty to our lives because it introduces us to a multitude of complexities that we may be ignoring. To celebrate that “weirdness,” we heard from Philadelphia’s premier couture taxidermist, Beth Beverly. “Taxidermy seems pretty weird,” she said. “…but aren’t we all weird?”

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