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Generating ideas: Talking images

Crée par : Les 7 Sens
Bibliothèque : Les 7 Sens (publique)
Dernière mise à jour : 17 août 2018

Something that can also be useful to generate ideas are projective images. Projection is an unconscious mechanism in which a person moves (or projects) his positive or negative sensitive perceptions onto an object or subject. You make the image speak through what you perceive in its relationship with the subject you are exploring.

For example: you want to understand how the ideal participative manager is defined.

- Choose an image randomly. 

- Focus on the image, letting go and focusing on what you feel, perceive and imagine.

- Let the ideas related to this perception, suggested or not by the card, picture how the ideal participative manager would be like. 

- Write the idea or ideas: you are the spokesperson for the card and the card is your inspiration.


1. It allows you to express yourself more easily by relying on an external element.

2. It allows you to move away from reality thanks to the potential of imagination carried by an image.

3. It facilitates the production of many ideas.

A few tips: 

- Persevere: the first time you use it, you may tend to rationalize or not have an idea.

- The more you welcome your ideas and those of others without judgment, the richer your words will be.

- Create challenges together to dare: the idea is hidden in the image. It's about finding it.

/ ! \ Attention: the quality and nature of the projected images is important.


Create your "bank of images"

You can create it with a series of figurative images such as photos, collages, figurative drawings, card games or more symbolic or abstract images.

You can choose images representing competing products, scenes illustrating situations...

The group can gradually add images from photos made by the group, collages, drawings. They can be bought in game stores, bookshops, specialized shops, or anywhere in the Internet.

The choice depends on your subject. 

You must have a bank of images with about thirty images at the beginning to have some choice before starting.


Choose your subject and its talking image

The group formulates its subject (often coming from the clarification work). Each member of the group chooses one of the proposed images or chooses one randomly, thinking very strongly about the subject.


Create a "Welcome Home"

Create the welcome support for the proposals that will arrive at each stage: it is your "Welcome Home of Ideas".

Write the exploration theme roughly at the top and middle of a board (1m x 3m Kraft paper). It's the roof of the house. 

Be careful, leave an empty place above the roof for the last step.

The rest of the house is empty and will welcome your next ideas, from the next step starting at the bottom - the ground floor, and then climbing the 3 floors.


Connect the theme with the imagination of the group

Each one in the group takes turns. Each one takes the chosen image and talks to the group about what the image means for them: their perceptions, emotions, sensations, poetry, associated memories, etc. For example: "It reminds me of... I feel, I have the impression that..." A team member (chosen by the speaker) notes what is said on a pale yellow post-it. All the feelings and perceptions are thus formalized on the post-it notes, and they are displayed above the projected image, in the "Welcome Home of Ideas". The images placed side by side make up for the ground floor. Above each image, the pale yellow post-its containing sensations, perceptions, memories... form the first floor.


Make ideas emerge

Altogether and individually, bring to all the 1st floor productions the creative challenge or exploration topic that has been written on the roof of your home. 

Let yourself be inspired by images and words. The solution to our problem lies hidden in your images and perceptions: look there! Who can smell it? Who sees a piece of it...?

Write early ideas on green post-its (one idea per post-it). It's the green light to creation.

Post-it notes of ideas take their place in the "Welcome Home". They form a 2nd floor above the 1st.


Start the race for ideas

Launch a contest "the greatest finder of hidden ideas". Everyone can use all the elements installed in the "Welcome Home", and the goal is to cross information, go further, flush out the invisible...

Everything that appears in the "Welcome Home" then serves as a projective support (images and words) for this race for ideas.

Each new idea is written on a fluorescent yellow post-it (bright idea) with always one idea per post-it. This way, a 3rd floor is formed over the 2nd floor in the "Welcome Home".


Screen ideas

Define 3 selection criteria for the bulk of ideas produced. These criteria depend on your subject, your objectives and the context. 

Each person chooses 3 ideas per criterion. Move the chosen ideas (there may be some written on the light yellow, green or fluorescent yellow post-its) over the roof of the house. Each one will wear a colored sticker to mark your criteria of choice. 

For example: Red = I like it - Green = Doable - Blue = Real innovation for the team.

You can still enrich the elements of the "Welcome Home" by clarifying the ideas, by finding new ideas born from the harmonization of existing ideas. At this point write them on the Fluorescent Yellow Post-it notes in the middle of the others. You can also choose them and mount them above the roof. 


Formulate a synthesis

You can tell the story of what the situation will be like once the ideas are implemented. You can also draw, play the situation, describe it to "another service"... The important thing is to bring all the ideas together and to draw a first practical lesson from them.

Les 7 Sens
Réseau de professionnels pour favoriser les compétences en créativité et l'éthique de l'humain.
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