Monthly Archives: March 2016

Storytelling in Words & Pictures: A Creative Classroom with Melissa Northway and Carolyn Le

Storytelling in Words & Pictures

Children’s author, Melissa Northway, and Illustrator, Carolyn Le to Lead

“Hands-on” Sunday Afternoon Fun for the Whole Family at the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity

Costa Mesa, CA: Write and illustrate your own short story at the Chuck Jones Center on Sunday, April 24 from 1 to 3 PM with children’s book author, Melissa Northway (Penelope the Purple Pirate, Clarence and the Traveling Circus), and illustrator, Carolyn Le (Clarence and the Traveling Circus) nurturing your creativity. This “Creative Classroom” is a free and open to the public event. Space is limited, RSVP a must. 949-660-7793 x 107 or Programs@ChuckJonesCenter.org. The Center is located at 3321 Hyland Ave., Suite A, Costa Mesa, CA 92626 in Orange County’s hip new retail destination, South Coast Collection or “SoCo”.

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“The Creative Classroom” workshops, currently scheduled one each quarter, offer children and adults alike, a safe and nurturing platform for exploring and exercising their creative muscles,” said Craig Kausen, chairman of the Center and Chuck Jones’s grandson. “We are at a critical turning point in our economy, from a manufacturing to a service economy and what business leaders are looking for in new hires is the ability to think creatively. One in six new jobs being created in California today is in the creative industries.”

The goal of the Creative Classroom workshops offered by the Chuck Jones Center is to encourage students to find within themselves a world where the laws of gravity don’t apply; a world where the space-time continuum can be altered; a world where they’re in control to break the rules. Imagine then, applying that kind of creative thinking to everyday life. How would they solve the problem if they weren’t constrained by rules, expectations, and assumptions that are imposed on us and we impose on ourselves?

About Melissa Northway:

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Melissa Northway was inspired to write children’s picture books after her daughter was born in 2006.   She joined the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) to find out how to make her dream of publishing a children’s picture book come true.  The journey was long and tons of work, but in January 2011, her first storybook app, Penelope the Purple Pirate, was released through her company Polka Dots Publishing and app developer PicPocket Books. She has published three children’s books that have received numerous awards that her daughter thinks are pretty cool! Her books are available on the iTunes store, Amazon and Barnes & Noble and she is currently working on her fourth children’s book. She is also the creator and editor of the lifestyle website Dandelion Moms.  You can find her at www.dandelionmoms.com and www.melissanorthway.com

About Carolyn Le:

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Carolyn draws on the sunny California days, and her love of storytelling to create her watercolor paintings. She has twice received a first-place Illustration Award for her portfolio from the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Editor’s Day, have received a Merit Award from the Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles and have had her work shown in galleries in Los Angeles and London. The illustrations for her first picture book, Clarence and the Traveling Circus, received a Reader’s Choice Award for Illustration. Currently, Carolyn is writing and illustrating her own picture books and dreaming of ways to make her secret wish of having the power to fly come true.

About the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity:

The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity is a 501(c)3 public charity located in Orange County, CA. Chuck Jones was a creative genius who gave life to Road Runner, Wile E. Coyote & Bugs Bunny along with over 300 animated films.  The Center, which he founded in 1999, is an organization that fosters and teaches creative thinking—the thinking behind problem solving. It’s a proven fact that “creativity” is like a muscle in your brain that needs exercise in order to get and stay healthy. The stronger that muscle is, the better it works in engaging tasks and solving problems. The Center serves as a gymnasium for the brain. We work with disadvantaged youth, school systems without arts programs, people on the autism spectrum, the elderly (many of whom suffer from early onset dementia), and other groups, including corporate clients, who see the value of pumping up creativity in their ranks.

“Use a Bigger Brush” –A. Starr, Artist and Doctor of Neurology

“Chance favors the prepared mind,” said Arnold Starr, artist and founder of UCI’s neurology department, quoting Louis Pasteur. Last Friday, Craig Kausen, spent a few hours with A. Starr (that’s how he signs his paintings) at his home in coastal south Orange County talking about many different topics including what is “it” that people are searching for?  “Their color” the response. As well as touching on the topics of creativity, arts education today, neurology, science, and discovery, We were fortunate to have video-taped the conversation and over the next few months hope to share snippets of that conversation with our readers.

Dr. Arnold Starr, left, with Craig Kausen, chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, gifted the Center one of his paintings of a cochlea.

Dr. Arnold Starr, left, with Craig Kausen, chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, gifted the Center one of his paintings of a cochlea.

By the way, “use a bigger brush,” was Starr’s answer to “I don’t paint often because I have to think too hard about it.” Advice we’re taking to heart.

Photo by Stephen Russo.

DAFFY DUCK PAC RAISING FUNDS FOR PRESIDENTIAL RUN

DAFFY DUCK PAC RAISING FUNDS FOR PRESIDENTIAL RUN

Contributions support the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity

Orange County, CA, February 25, 2016: Renowned film legend Daffy Duck announced his intent to seek the office of President of the United States. Shouting at a crowd of three from the steps of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, candidate Duck hinted at his platform. “A vote for Daffy Duck is a vote for creativity and imagination, and I’m throwing my bill into the ring! Why not? It’s been thrown everywhere else!”

Tying the announcement in with an early victory party on June 5, 2016, before the California Primary (Tuesday, June 7, 2016), the Chuck Jones Center in Orange County will host a “Daffy Duck for President” bumper sticker/campaign poster drawing party, with prizes and celebrations.  Supporters can cast their vote for Daffy at any time on the Center’s website, http://www.daffyforpresident.org.  “I’m the only candidate for the party, and if anybody knows about a party, it’s this duck!” he told the largely silent trio of passersby.

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Mr. Duck’s reasons for entering the grueling 2016 political fray were clarified in a press release. “As candidates of both parties fall away, one candidate rises! A champion of the people who’s not mainstream (but who knows his streams). He’s more stream-of-consciousness. He believes in mom, apple pie, and social insecurity. He’s got brains, bluster, and pluck! He’s a nihilistic socialist rogue insider with Tea Party Appeal.”

For every contribution of $100 to the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity’s “Daffy for President” PAC (Patently Angry Character), the contributor will receive a hardcover copy of Chuck Jones’s “Daffy Duck for President,” a “Daffy for President” campaign button, and a “Daffy for President 2016” bumper sticker. For contributions less than $100, a variety of other gifts are included. Visit http://www.daffyforpresident.org to donate today and for full details! All contributions benefit the educational and outreach programs of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, a 501(c)3 public charity located in Orange County, California. The Center brings creativity programs to underserved children and adults in Los Angeles, Orange Counties, and beyond.

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“Daffy puts the ‘wag’ back in ‘bandwagon,’” the announcement said. “He puts the ‘otus’ back in POTUS. He puts the ‘ivity’ back in ‘creativity.’ He’s not only a problem solver, but he’s a problem creator! And if this world needs anything these days, it’s more problems! Ladies and Gentlemen—we ask your support for the next leader of the Free (if not reasonably priced) World–Daffy Duck for President, 2016!”

Chuck Jones’s “Daffy Duck for President” was a pet project of the four-time Academy Award-recipient and legendary animation pioneer, and was born of a desire to talk to kids about the process of passing a law as detailed in the U.S. Constitution. Using Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and Jones’s unique brand of humor, the book was his last published work.

Endorsements have poured in:

“Eh, what’s one more lunatic?” – Bugs Bunny, international film star

“Petty. Greedy. Jealous. And transparent! Daffy fits the bill.” –Foghorn Leghorn (R-Alabama)

“Who?” – Porky Pig, actor

“Are you serious? Start-a-runnin’, varmint!” – Yosemite Sam, diplomat. 

About Daffy Duck:

Daffy Duck is an animated cartoon character created by the animation studio of Warner Bros. in the 1930s. Styled as an anthropomorphic black duck, the character has appeared in cartoon series such as Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies where he has usually been depicted as the screwball companion and occasional archrival of Bugs Bunny. Daffy starred in 133 shorts in animation’s Golden Age, making him the third most frequent character in the Looney Tunes/Merrie Melodies cartoons, behind Bugs Bunny and Porky Pig.

Daffy was number 14 on TV Guide‘s list of top 50 best cartoon characters and was featured on one of the issue’s four covers as Duck Dodgers with Porky Pig.

About the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity:

The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity is a 501(c)3 public charity located in Orange County, CA. Chuck Jones was a creative genius  who gave life to Road Runner, Wile E. Coyote & Bugs Bunny along with over 300 animated films.  The Center, which he founded in 1999, is an organization that fosters and teaches creative thinking—the thinking behind problem solving. It’s a proven fact that “creativity” is like a muscle in your brain that needs exercise in order to get and stay healthy. The stronger that muscle is, the better it works in engaging tasks and solving problems. The Center serves as a gymnasium for the brain. We work with disadvantaged youth, school systems without arts programs, people on the autism spectrum, the elderly (many of whom suffer from early onset dementia), and other groups, including corporate clients, who see the value of pumping up creativity in their ranks.

Support the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity. Exercise Your Genius!

Images are available upon request. Interviews available and are dependent upon the candidate’s prior engagements.