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February 15, 8:30am • Institute for Contemporary Art at Virginia Commonwealth University •


Before Marcel Ames became the guy in wingtips, he was on-track to join the boys in blue. The Richmond native was gearing up for a career in law enforcement when life—in the form of a concussion suffered during training—set the 30-year-old on a new path. Today, he produces pocket squares, ties and made-to-measure suits, as well as a collection of women’s scarves set to debut later this summer, which can be purchased from Ames directly. 

Read more about Ames’ inspiration in this Virginia Living article here

Meet us for coffee and creative inspiration on Friday, January 18th at the Virginia Museum of History & Culture as we explore this month’s global theme #CMsurreal. Tickets go live for this month’s event on Monday, January 14 at 10am.

January’s theme is SURREAL. 

When you look at the artwork of Frida Kahlo or Salvador Dalí, there’s an element of surprise. Why does it feel familiar yet also otherworldly? Surrealists sought to break free from the shackles of the rational mind and dive into the deep end of the unconscious. The canvas, then, became a mirror for what emerged out of that process. This movement was inspired by events in the 1920s on the heels of the first world war and continues to influence artists, writers, photographers, and filmmakers.

This cultural and artistic movement ushered in new techniques that helped humans expand their minds. Today, we recognize a sense of the surreal in unexpected moments in daily life. Art exhibits like Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Room are becoming readily available, encouraging people to immerse themselves in experiences that break reality. A ballet performance or a silent meditation retreat can be a dreamlike experience.

Whether we experience a surreal moment or dabble in processes like drawing without thinking or writing without self-editing, there’s something to be learned about ourselves and what lingers under the hood of our desires to keep life orderly and controlled. Happy New Year! Our Brussels chapter chose this month’s exploration of Surreal and Charlotte Dumortier illustrated the theme. SURREAL is presented globally this month by

Join our exploration on January 18th. Tickets go live January 14th at 10 am. 


Miranda Anderson of Live Free Creative encouraged us to bridge creativity and tradition with intention at our last event of 2018.

Thank you to our local partners who kept us honest this month: Capital One, IdeaWeavers, Worth Higgins and Associates, and ICF Olson.

Watch the full talk here. 

See more of the global action with #CMtradition.

MEET MIRANDA ANDERSON, our December #CMtradition speaker.


Q: Tell us how you you landed in Richmond.
A: We lived in Northern Virginia for several years before moving to Austin, Texas. When an opportunity opened up for my husband to take an in-house council position in Richmond, we knew we would love the city and the lifestyle, so it was a no brainer! We moved into a small rental while we house hunted for a few months. Then we found our sweet fixer upper in the near west end and have been under renovation since January last year. We’re ready to finish up soon!

Q: How do you measure success in your creative endeavors? In your life?
A: I measure success in my creative endeavors by what I can control: Am I doing the things that make me happy, regardless of how they are received? Am I learning something new? Am I feeling fulfilled in my everyday life? When I can say “Yes” to these questions, I feel like I am on the correct path both in my creativity and in my life.

Q: What inspires you locally?
A: I love the mix of history and innovation in Richmond. The colonial homes and giant trees combined with new restaurants, thriving local businesses, and edgy street art gives the city a feeling of wholeness. The creative entrepreneur scene has been really open and welcoming with events like CreativeMornings, Rebelle Con, and spaces like The Broad intentionally giving a home to people working towards a more creative, connected life.

Q: Your topic is on tradition. What’s one tradition you have ditched in the past? What’s one you’ve created?
A: I love traditions, and I have learned not all of them serve me. One tradition I have ditched is frying hot donuts for trick-or-treaters. We did it for years and loved the community we built, but as our kids have gotten older it didn’t make sense and we wanted to spend time actually walking the neighborhood with them. So we let it go. 

One tradition we have created in our family is to celebrate our marriage anniversary as a “Family Birthday”. We get a cake, take a family picture, and sing happy birthday to our family. It is fun for our kids to feel involved in our anniversary and look forward to it. And of course we also take a couple days to go away and celebrate as a couple without the kids, too. 

Q: We’ve heard you’ve experience with CreativeMornings in other cities! Tell us how you became involved in this community.
A: I was introduced to CreativeMornings when I moved to Austin, Texas. I think my husband was the one who stumbled upon the community as he was looking for local events to be involved with. We both attended frequently, and loved meeting and connecting to both other creatives and the local venues and restaurants who provided space and food. I was invited to teach a hands-on workshop at the CreativeMornings Summit and had an amazing time teaching indigo dyeing to CreativeMorning volunteers from around the world!

Hear more from Miranda at our last event of the year at Studio Two Three on Friday, December 14th. Tickets go LIVE Monday, December 10th at 10am here

December’s theme is TRADITION. Traditions are sacred because they cultivate consistency and a sense of belonging. It’s the bread and butter for fostering connection and community. We’re in a time where traditions are being challenged and remixed. We question how they came to be and the context in how (or if) they fit into the future. “This is just the way it is” is a statement of fear, not possibility. It undermines the human capacity to adapt and create change. Traditions are made by us, for us, so therefore they can be reinvented with intention and imagination. You may not start the next national holiday, but you can bring to the table your generosity, your kindness, your vision and heart to create a more welcoming future.

Our last 2018 global theme TRADITION was chosen Barranquilla chapter and Andrés M. Felfle illustrated the theme.

Grab your ticket to Richmond’s exploration of this theme on Monday, December 10th at 10:00 am here


Cabell Harris of Work Labs shared his #CMrestart perspective with us this November as we celebrated our third birthday.

Thank you to our local partners who kept us honest this month: Capital One, IdeaWeavers, Worth Higgins and AssociatesICF Olson, and Fahrenheit IT.

  • Venue Dogtown Dance Theatre
  • Breakfast & Coffee Brewers Cafe
  • Videography Fotochrome Design
  • Photography Sound Snap Photo
  • Instagram Takeover ICF Olson
  • In Kind Printing Keith Fabry

See more of the global action with #CMrestart.

Cabell has one of those minds that combines a military strategist with a sense of humor, A.D.D. child with business acumen, and a mad professor with taste and a sense of composition. He’s a wonderful, bright creative solver with more going on in his own head than most of the entire advertising industry today.” - Andy Spade, cofounder of Kate Spade.

Meet Cabell Harris, our #CMrestart speaker.

Cabell is the Creative Director and founder of WORK Labs and WORK and Friends. He will tell you there’s a lot of things he’s admittedly not very good at but he’s pretty good at branding. In a recent Creative Q&A with BizSense he shared how he learned to work quick and smart, solve problems and be somewhat of a Navy SEAL team for agencies.

Read more here.

Thank you for joining us, Cabell! We look forward to exploring our global theme ‘Restart’ with you.  

Tickets for this event go LIVE on Monday, November 12th at 10am here. They tend to go fast so set your alarms and we’ll see you soon.

November is Restart

I need to disconnect. There’s too much noise in my head. I am burning out. I need space to rethink everything. I need a hard reset.

Exhaustion is like dehydration—when you feel it, you’ve gone too far.

So we finally cave in and heed the words of people who’ve found their centers again: take a trip into nature, go for walks, unplug completely.

The challenge with restarting is that we often save it for the end rather than creating pockets throughout our weeks where we prioritize reflection and solitude.

Restarting is essential. It’s a way to digest experiences, reflect and cultivate self-awareness, and remind ourselves that life is to be enjoyed. It’s refreshing and feeds greater intention and momentum into our creative endeavors.

If you find yourself feeling like you’re on a treadmill with an invisible hand increasing the velocity, remind yourself: only you have the power to get off and recalibrate.

Our global exploration of Restart was chosen by our Cologne chapter and illustrated by Marie Maerz. Thank you to Adobe for empowering the global creative community this month.


Vulnerability, being raw, art as honesty… and font geeks. Karen Costello of The Martin Agency took us on an journey about, “creating things that make people feel” at #CMhonesty. So much honest wisdom packed into a Friday morning. Thank you Karen! 

Our time at Art Works was well spent with a breakfast spread from SubRosa, coffee fuel from Alchemy RVA and a few very honest #RVA moments.

Thank you to our local partners who kept us honest this month: Capital One, IdeaWeavers, Worth Higgins and Associates, and ICF Olson.

  • Venue Art Works 
  • Videography by Max Schlickenmeyer
  • Photography by Sandy Swagger Jones
  • In Kind Printing by Keith Fabry

See more of the global action with #CMhonesty.

October is Honesty

Honesty is the currency for connection. It’s a gift we give to each other that strengthens bonds and deepens relationships.

Honesty is a practice where we start from the heart.

Being honest isn’t always easy and being honest all of the time is impractical. Giving honest feedback or sharing our opinions requires sensitivity to the context and meeting others where they are—with kindness and empathy.

Honesty is about providing the information that you would want if you were in a similar situation.

Another way to look at honesty: it’s a flower born out of the soil of trust, connection, and conversations. The more we nurture conversations that breed trust and forge a connection, the more honesty becomes baked into the way we lead our lives.

This month’s global exploration of Honesty was chosen by our Cardiff chapter and illustrated by James Lewis.