Shineworks: Brewing Up Some Fun

Years ago, when we first started creating monthly Shineworks projects, I was convinced that what made them special was the way they fostered creativity.

I still think they're cool for that reason, but now, even more than creativity, I am convinced that what makes this concept so worthwhile is the emphasis it places on encouragement.

Shineworks strives to teach the value of encouraging others and, like leadership educators Kouzes and Posner, who believe Encouraging the Heart is one of five practices used by exemplary leaders, we also believe that showing appreciation for individual excellence is a great way to bring out the best in others.

This month's project is a perfect example.

I used the designated monthly item – coffee filters – to make sunflowers. I dipped them in yellow and orange dyes, layered them, and then used gold glitter in the centers to make sure they shined.

When they were done, even I was surprised by how simple they were to make and how beautifully they turned out.


But the real rush of this DYI project didn't come until I settled on which deserving person in my corner of the world would be the recipient.

It was Samantha, artist and Director of Morada Way Clay. This vibrant, passionate, warm, patient, and supportive woman welcomed me and my boys into her community this summer. I was on a mission to complete a project for the House of Shine and Jack was intent on learning how to use a potter's wheel. Week after week we'd show up ready to produce and she'd willingly set aside her own projects to teach us the basics of kneading, throwing, glazing, and firing.

So, early one day we snuck into Samantha's studio and brightened up her small corner of the world. You see, Samantha shines and the world does nothing but win when we encourage her for it.


Because when Samantha knows that her generosity is noticed and appreciated, she'll be even more inclined to share her shine again

and again

and again.

That's the way Shineworks works; a big cycle that begins and ends with being generous enough to encourage others.

Consider joining us this month when we make something using tin foil and then scour our communities for someone new that we can encourage.

Claudia Beeny

Founder and Executive Director

Posted on 8/1/14 10:00 am by Claudia Beeny in: Art,Shineworks

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