150 - Ellen Chisa
Ellen Chisa is a Founder in Residence at Boldstart Ventures, where she enjoys working with engineers before and while they are starting their companies. If you’re an engineer who is thinking of joining or starting an early stage company, she is always down to chat.
Before Boldstart, she started Dark, a programming language and new way to build serverless backends.
Twitter → twitter.com/ellenchisa
First image, tech:
- Remarkable 2 for a Notebook and reading pdfs
- Kindle Paperwhite for reading books
- Airpods Pro
- M1 Macbook Pro
- Dell UltraSharp U2720Q 27 Inch Monitor
- Sony A660 with Sigma 16mm f/1.4 DC DN Contemporary Lens
- Shure MV7 XLR/USB Dynamic Podcasting Microphone
- El Gato Keylight
- Google Home Mini
- Desk is a very old Ikea
- Exercise ball for chair
- Fake silk flowers created at a Crafternoon organized by her friend Andy Coravos
- Hydroflask with bike trip sticker
- Keap Candle (canyons scent)
- The Present daily clock
She likes to keep her desk fairly empty, so she keep everything mounted on Ikea pegboards and shelves behind her. She tries to keep things that make her happy and remind her of people she loves in her office. Here is a selection of those things.
- Ursula Vernon print - "nevermind how I got here, just get me down" (gift from Nikki Lee's mom)
- Mood clock (gift from Alice Wong)
- Rubber Ducky Debugging (gift from Amy Dyer)
- Maine Heritage Apple Calendar (gift from Jess Goldfin)
- Cinnamon Toast Crunch Candle (colle.la)
- I went to the party button (designed by her husband, from her wedding!)
- Bunny with ice cream embroidery (gift from Vince Saracino)
- Merit Badge for Reinventing the Wheel (Snarky Scouts Kickstarter project)
Things if she gets stuck:
- Intuiti Cards (also IDEO cards, Harrison Metal cards, traditional Tarot cards)
- Startup Die
- Campaign for Accurate Measurement of Creativity and Rainbow Pencils
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What is your favorite item in your workspace?
Favorite item is definitely the Kindle. I read a ton so it makes it easy to always have a book handy (in my office, before bed, or while traveling), and regardless of if it's light or dark out.
How do you spark creativity?
I tend to Spark Creativity by trying to get "unstuck" somehow. My two most frequent options are free writing, or if I'm too stuck for that I'll pull a card (a Tarot card, an Intuiti card, or an IDEO method card - just to get a new idea in there).
How do you keep the work-life balance?
I don't tend to get resentful about working. I'm one of the few people I know who even enjoys reading my email - so thank you to everyone who sends high quality email! On the whole I tend to just go where my energy is. If I want to take a break for a workout at 2pm on a Tuesday, I will, and if I want to work on a Saturday I will.