Friday, May 11, 2018

Observation and imagination

... in a nutshell, [this] was Lenonardo's signature talent: the ability to convey, by marrying observation with imagination, "not only the works of nature but also infinite things nature never created"
Walter Isaacson in his history "Lenonardo da Vinci"

And, how many of us have Lenonardo's instincts of observation -- on the one hand -- which are then drivers for something unimagined?
  • How would you handle a Lenonardo on your team? (Did I mention his total disregard for schedule; his somewhat arrogant approach to customers; and the fact he finished modestly few projects)
  • How does your stuffy project office handle the imagination thing, one might ask? (I'm sure observations are just fine in the PMO)
In an earlier posting on Leonardo, I quoted another historian:

Alas! This man will do nothing at all, since he is thinking of the end before he has made a beginning. ... In his imagination, he frequently formed enterprises so difficult and so subtle that they could not be realized and worthily executed by human hands. His conceptions were varied to infinity
On the other hand, speaking of ".... conceptions varied to infinity". Is that all bad?
  • Who knew we needed a smart phone before someone imagined it? 
  • And, thousands of other examples over history, probably going back to the bow and arrow -- and before (See: imagining ancient pyramids, and yes, some of them were used for grain storage to buffer bad harvests)

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