How is that going to work at my event?
Picture the scene: some guests are beginning to arrive at a reception. Perhaps this is one of those business events where most of the guests are unlikely to know each other. The only thing they all have in common is their contact with the company hosting the event, which has invited them all for a chance to get to know them better.
In walks a silhouettist. It is not immediately obvious that he is any different from the other guests in the room, but this is a guest with a rather unique talent. He approaches a small group of people and begins to engage them in conversation. After a short while he produces a pair of scissors and - seemingly in a matter of seconds - cuts an astonishingly accurate portrait of a fellow guest and holds it up to the light for all to see. The cries of amazement from the group quickly attract the attention of others in the room, some of whom gather to see what is going on. The silhouette, now mounted on a card, is passed around the room.
Meanwhile the silhouettist has found a second volunteer - more willing than the first - and has already produced a new portrait, slightly less rushed than the last. Or is this one perhaps a caricature? Is that nose really quite that prominent?
Seeing that new guests are arriving the silhouettist quietly excuses himself and moves off to another part of the room, where he introduces himself to a new group of people and repeats the same procedure. As before, he meets with some initial surprise and reluctance, quickly followed by delight and astonishment at the sight of the first silhouette. After a little while the whole room becomes aware that 'something is up', and people begin to search the room for the silhouettist, hoping they will be next. Meanwhile, a number of small black-paper profiles, mounted on neat folding cards, are being passed around the room from stranger to stranger. Each compares the other's profile and - perhaps more importantly - they all get to know each other in the process.
The party is beginning to look like a success...