Play Time

I have a potential collaboration that's percolating on the theme of PLAY! Today, I want to share some of the reflection and research I've been doing on the topic.

Before reading anything further on the topic I wanted to take a minute to reflect on what PLAY means to me. I came to the following conclusions:

  • Play isn't just for kids.
  • For me, art is fun but it's also working towards a specific goal. I don't think my art is Play.
  • Play should be fun.
  • I would consider the benefit of Play would be to create connections, laugh, and inevitably gain experience.

After reflecting on the above, I began my research on the topic. Starting with this Ted Talk by Stuart Brown, the founder of the National Institute for Play.

Through is talk and website he points out 7 types of play:

  1. Body Play
  2. Object Play
  3. Social Play
  4. Imaginative/Pretend Play
  5. Storytelling/Narrative Play
  6. Creative Play
  7. Attunement Play

Some of his research that resonated with me includes the following:

  • The opposite of play isn't work, it's depression.
  • A chief characteristic of play is that it's done for it's own sake. That the act of doing it has to be more important than any purpose.
  • Play steams from curiosity.
  • Play is important to survival because it develops our flexibility and adaptability.
  • He also introduced the word, Neotency which means retention of immature qualities into adulthood.
  • He encourages people to explore their personal play history looking for clues to their passion.
  • He says it's best attempted spontaneously not with a time allotted for it but rather have it infuse our daily life.