Make Something: Ice Cubes

Today’s make something prompt seemed simple: work with ice cubes.

As we sat down to dinner with friends at a little Italian restaurant, I was thrilled to see cubes in each glass of water. No crushed ice. Cubes.

What’s more, our server—a fun, outgoing, young woman named Amanda—seemed to have a strong creative gene. While I explained my need to make something with ice cubes before the night was up, she immediately started brainstorming. In fact, she came up with the idea of “ice sculpture.” In just a few seconds we had a plan. At the end of the meal she would bring me a supply of ice cubes, a couple long, a narrow plate, and some black cocktail napkins. I would spell “sculpt,” and my husband would photograph the work.


Yeah. Not really.

First of all, the plate was warm. So the S began melting even as I started to form the C. Then it became clear I’d need more than one plate to fit all six letters. By this time, the restaurant was hopping, and it took awhile for Amanda to produce another plate. S and C and U were melting rapidly, and I still had to form L and P and T.

Finally, with the entire word in place, we discovered the challenge of photographing ice in a dark room with an iPhone. Jim tried several techniques and angles, and none resulted in a good image. Ultimately, this was the best we could do:

makesomething-icecubesBut I’m not counting this a failure by any stretch. Here’s why:

  1. I made good on my daily commitment. I did make something with ice. No one ever said it had to be good.
  2. I got to talk about my project and brainstorm creative approaches to today’s prompt with my husband, our friends Karen and Ed, and Amanda. Each of us had a part in this work.
  3. We had a good time, collaborating and problem-solving and laughing all the while.

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