Mariah's Biography

Mariah works as a meeting designer, teacher, and visual thinking specialist. She helps clients like non-profit organizations, corporations, and community groups to translate their visions, processes, plans – anything! – into engaging images. Whether she’s listening to a keynote at a large conference or sitting at the table during a small meeting, Mariah captures her clients’ key messages and themes in Visual Records – metaphors, images, and words that she draws in real time. She also loves designing meetings that tap into the wisdom of groups and their ability to think together. Mariah teaches the practice of visual thinking in public and private workshops, building on participants’ innate creativity and desire to communicate effectively. She lives in beautiful Oakland, CA, with her husband and lots of art supplies.

Please contact her at to find out how to bring visuals into your work.

Her clients include: Genentech,, PepsiCo, Nike, The United Way, GlaxoSmithKlein, AAA, Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), The Veteran’s Association, and many more!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Chautauqua 2010

I just returned from a magical 3 day gathering called 'Chautauqua' held at the Mount Madonna School in Watsonville CA. "What is a Chautauqua?" you might logically ask. The amazing Ward Mailliard is the ring leader and progenitor of the gatherings, so I'll let him explain. The Chautauqua is an "engagement of people who care about learning...and they center around the essential question, of 'What are the conversations that I want to have that will support my own transformation in the learning process?' and, 'How can I engage in conversations that will support the work that I care most about?'" Over seventy people attended this year to explore their individual and our collective learning journeys.

I was fortunate to be a part of an initial conversation that led to the use of art as a central method for exploring learning and transformation at Chautauqua. Here's Ward again:
"I just had an interesting and thought provoking conversation with Mariah Howard who most of you know a gifted visual note taker and, well so much more as a thinker of creative engagement. We were talking about the Chautauqua 2010 (July 6-8) and how we might deepen, extend and connect the trail blazing that happens there" by engaging "the gifts of music, art and technology to create new frameworks of participation at the event and even beyond."

This year was unique in that there were three Visual Recorders present: Mary Corrigan, Avril Orloff and myself. The three of us found a way to encouraging people to make their own visual records, collages, and group drawings while the 'professionals' collaborated on a large Visual Record of the event which you can see in an earlier post. The other stellar facilitators were Peter Block, Barbara McAfee, Vivian Wright and Michael Jones...a dream team of conveners.
It was a fantastic opportunity to experience the power of art as it relates to creating community, deepening our ways of learning, and transforming our individual narratives about the journey we're on.

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