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Jennifer Eberhardt Smith is the author of Donuts and Dandelions, finding your Joy and Growth. The simple philosophy of focusing on two main life goals helps clarify what you truly want in life. She is the creator of the arts/communication app Paint To Me, which is the culmination of a years-long project. Jennifer is now focusing on helping others through their life journey, either as a coach or speaker, both one on one and in the professional world.
A regular day for Jennifer, as a mom, begins with taking her kids to school followed by sending and returning emails. As well as this Jennifer has been committing a portion of her time to podcast interviews like this one as she finds it a lot of fun and a great way to connect with different people around the world. As the kids come back from school it’s back to making the dinner and getting them to bed before returning to working on her own projects when the house is quiet in an evening.
Jennifer’s favorite fail comes from a project where it started out around creating a language of color, this worked well with real paint on real canvas’; the problem came when translating this to digital. This led to Jennifer’s original idea not working out, even though she spent a large amount of time picking out the correct tones and colors and had great pictures of them on the canvas’. The biggest lesson Jennifer took from this was to start with an idea that you intend to finish with, in this example if she would have started this project with an app in mind instead of as an artistic endeavor her approach would have been different from the beginning and instead this lead to a loss in translation within the communication. She realized it didn’t have to be perfect but that there could be approximations and they are good enough.
Jennifer thinks that we all hit roadblocks and it’s about what you do in those moments, one of Jennifer’s challenges that she overcome came with her project when she realized she wasn’t going to be able to do it by herself the way she wanted it done. Everyone was quoting things that just weren’t possible at the time but she found a site (freelancer.com) where you can post your projects to freelancers and people can bid on it, through this she found someone within her budget who was passionate about the project. It is always a good idea to reach out and get help, whether that means getting a team, contractor or even if just advice.
Jennifer’s best practice when approaching these types of projects is to be open-minded, even to ideas that may not have occurred to you in the beginning. There’s always going to be something that comes up unexpectedly.
Jennifer really enjoyed listening to Paul Darvasi some episodes ago and would enjoy listening to Malcolm Gladwell on the podcast as he does a lot of research into how we think and how society works. He talks specifically around how we learn, develop language skills and look at things in general. Jenifer would love to hear his ideas around gaming and technology.
One of Jennifer’s favorite books also comes from Malcolm Gladwell, a book titled The Tipping Point and it’s around what happens in a moment of change, Jennifer thinks this relates well to the gaming mindset.
One of Jennifer’s favorite experiences of gaming comes from the Atari, it takes her back to her childhood when the idea of playing games in your house was something unheard of and suddenly it was possible. We then went into a conversation on how nostalgia can be used in different ways.
You can find Jennifer on Facebook at her Donuts and Dandelions page, as well as at Donutsanddandelions [at] gmail [dot] com. Her book is available at Amazon and her app is available through the App Store: Paint to Me.
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