Friday, April 06, 2012

Hello Organizational Project Idea Tracking!

Ever since I started doing artistic projects, long before that became my job/mission, I have searched for a good visual tool for tracking the projects that I'm working on. I think I may have found it. It's portable, completely customize-able, at-a-glance-functional and works as a funnel of the idea process.

I looked and looked and finally figured out I was going to have to make something. The really ironic thing is that I am deep into technological wizardry. I have a laptop, desktop, smartphone (since 2004 or so), mp3 player, tablet computer and graphics tablet, among other things. Usually, the more advanced futuristic, the more I like/use it. However, I came to the conclusion that I needed something more organic, something analog.

So what does this homemade organizer look like? Here's some pics of the tools and how it turned out.

First I bought some Moleskin volant notebooks, 3M bright colorful post-it notes and 3M post-it durable tabs. Of course, you could use any small notebook, but after living in Italy and filling several Moleskin journals, I am a little partial to the brand. Besides they have some new very colorful soft cover styles in the volant line. 
Then I took a tab and placed it on each subsequent page starting with the second. I purposefully skipped the first one, because the cover didn't naturally open to it, it opened to the second page. Every time I placed a tab, I wrote on it the title of a different project that I am working on. After placing a tab and title on each page (I indented the tabs as I went, to make them easier to see at a glance), I put a post-it note on each page.

Then I can write notes on the post-its referencing the project. If I fill those up with ideas, I can place new post-its on top of the originals.

The concept is that when a project is completed, I can take it out, tab and post-its. Then if I want to archive them, and most I do, I bought a couple extra volant matching notebooks (each color actually comes with a second notebook with the same color cover, just darker).

Voila! This does not replace, Evernote, Dropbox and the myriad apps and devices I use, but it does make it so I can quickly and easily scan across all the projects I am working on and determine what needs attention next.
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