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Creatively Recalculating Your Daily Design Routine52:57 with Von Glitschka
It’s too easy to get stuck in the uninspiring routine of design sameness. Predictable results, based on a safe creative formula we find ourselves drifting towards too often. We justify it because it’s proven, risk-free and we know the client will be comfortable with it. This presentation encourages you to rock the design boat, jump into the creative waters and capsize your USS Mundane through smart creative risks that’ll move you in new directions and help you stay inspired and relevant.
[MUSIC] 0:00 [SOUND] You guys get 0:02 the benefit of getting a more refined talk. 0:07 The first time I did this talk, was at the HOW conference this last summer, and 0:12 I need I need a little preamble to set it up, so you understand the full context. 0:19 And that is, it's about encouraging other creative people, like yourselves, 0:24 to kinda step outside your comfort zone, and try 0:29 new things to pursue creativity for no 0:34 other reason than being creative, and doing so outside the context of your 0:39 job, outside the context of a client project, and, and handle it in such 0:43 a way where it's just your creative curiosity running free. 0:49 Now when I was initially gonna give this 0:54 talk I realized if I'm telling the audience to 0:55 step outside their comfort zone and do that that 0:58 how am I gonna do that in a talk? 1:03 And I came up with the idea of dressing up in a costume as I gave the talk. 1:05 And, but I knew if I picked the costume I'd 1:12 you know, gravitate towards something I think would be cool. 1:16 And so I took my daughter, we went to a costume shop. 1:19 And I told her to pick out the costume I have to wear to give my talk. 1:22 And thankfully she didn't pick something like Little Bo 1:27 Peep or anything but she picked out a rabbit suit. 1:31 So I gave my talk in this rabbit suit 1:38 under really hot lights and it was really, really uncomfortable. 1:42 I just sweat up a storm, and of course I 1:48 have good friends in the audience making fun of me. 1:52 [LAUGH] 1:54 So, so I didn't dress up today, but I did 1:56 put this into practice when I gave my talk originally. 2:00 And as I stated it's all about 2:04 pursuing creativity outside the context of your work. 2:07 Now this talk is specifically based on my own struggles with creativity. 2:11 I'm faced with solving a design problem and I feel like I'm running on fumes. 2:18 One of the keys to achieve that level of thinking that 2:25 leads to clever solutions and those eureka moments that we all associate 2:30 with good design ideas is really found and facilitated 2:35 to a greater degree when you pursue creativity outside the realm of your job. 2:41 It's a personal thing. 2:48 Now through this whole court, through this whole talk, I'm 2:50 gonna be showing you examples of people who do this. 2:53 And the first example, all of you know who it is. 2:57 It's the guy who put this conference together. 3:00 And I, I should set this up by saying to do this isn't hard. 3:03 I'm not talking you to do anything that's extremely new. 3:09 At least not at the beginning. 3:13 Take whatever skills you have currently and put 'em to 3:15 use in a different way outside the context of your job. 3:18 And so, the first example is Mike Jones and his family. 3:22 Now Mike does branding. 3:27 He designs logos, so he decided to take a new chapter 3:30 in his life and brand it, and that would be his vasectomy. 3:33 [LAUGH] So when I first saw this, I thought it was brilliant. 3:37 I go, that's exactly what I'm talking about. 3:47 Pursuing creativity, cuz nobody hired him to do this, you know. 3:50 >> [LAUGH]. 3:53 >> Another good example. 3:55 >> [LAUGH] >> This is Adam Patch. 3:56 He's an animator. 4:02 Him and his wife were out to dinner one night and they had some wine. 4:04 And his wife had a little too much wine, and decided to tell a joke. 4:09 And unbeknownst to his wife, he decided to record it on his iPhone. 4:15 And that moment inspired this animation. 4:21 Kay, there are two corn chips and they were friends. 4:28 They were in school together and they were playing on the playground 4:34 together and [NOISE] 4:40 one chip thought the other chip was being unfair. 4:46 And he told em. 4:49 I don't think you are being fair [LAUGH] I am your friend, why aren't you being fair. 4:53 And the other chip was like [NOISE]. 5:00 I don't think you know me. 5:03 >> [LAUGH] 5:04 >> And then the other chip was like, come on, let's just taco bout it. 5:05 >> [LAUGH]. 5:11 >> [LAUGH] And then the other chip was like, no, I'm nacho [SOUND] friend. 5:12 >> [LAUGH]. 5:20 No. 5:23 I'm nacho friend. 5:25 [LAUGH] That's it. 5:27 >> Creativity and you've, you've heard 5:31 this from a few speakers, I've sat in on a couple of 5:38 the talks and other people have mentioned this so this isn't extremely unique 5:45 in terms of what I'm gonna say but all of them have touched on the aspect of 5:52 creativity takes some essential risk in order to do it well. 5:56 And a lot of times as creative people 6:03 there's a lot of people that'll look at you 6:06 in a strange way when you pursue creativity 6:08 especially creativity for the sake of just being creative. 6:10 I was watching TV last year, and this came on the screen. 6:15 That made me feel really good. 6:23 [LAUGH]. 6:25 Now a lot of people can depreciate what you do, because they don't understand it. 6:27 When you're being creative and it's not very 6:32 practical they might think it's kind of strange. 6:34 Here's another article I found. 6:38 >> [LAUGH]. 6:39 So it's, it's common to have people misunderstand 6:43 creativity and that can cause you to hesitate. 6:47 That can cause you to be fearful to pursue things especially new things. 6:51 And that's what I want to try and help 6:56 you facilitate is kind of how to step beyond that. 6:58 Now we all get stuck in a daily 7:01 creative routine whether we're working on our, working 7:03 for ourselves like me or maybe you work 7:07 for a company or an in-house art department. 7:10 It's easy to get stuck in a routine. 7:13 And usually it happens, you know, the, the routine starts and you do it every day. 7:15 And it becomes familiar. 7:21 Familiarity leads to comfort and ease. 7:23 You get comfortable with where you're at and how everything works. 7:26 That can lead to apathy. 7:31 Apathy means you have a lack of passion. 7:34 And when you have a lack of passion it makes it difficult to 7:38 stay inspired and if you're not inspired it's really hard to be creative. 7:42 Routine is the serial killer of creativity. 7:49 And so it's all about how do you defeat routine, how do you manage it in 7:54 a way that you can make pursuing creativity 7:58 and coming up with those unique ideas more sustainable. 8:02 And this next example, this is Ty Mattson. 8:05 He's a designer out of California and he's a fan of the show Dexter. 8:08 And so he decided, not because anybody hired him to 8:15 do it, he pursued creativity on his own and created 8:18 these posters based off of the different seasons of Dexter, 8:22 for no other reason than he just wanted to do it. 8:26 And he put it on his site, and that actually got some attention from Showtime. 8:29 And they invited him to come up to the studio. 8:34 And so he got to tour around the studio. 8:36 And even meet the actor. 8:40 And it eventually led to a bit role in the following season. 8:42 And this is from that. 8:46 [MUSIC] 8:53 [MUSIC]. 8:59 >> This is professor Trent Casey. 9:02 He's an evolutionary biologist and a noted atheist. 9:03 He has a book out refuting the existence. 9:07 >> He was the guy with the flashlight looking around there. 9:10 >> [LAUGH]. 9:12 >> Now, the reason why I bring that up is cuz obviously not if you share what you 9:15 do, creative wise, outside the context of work it's not always gonna lead to that. 9:20 But that would have never happened if he wouldn't have done that. 9:26 So that's why I wanted to share that. 9:29 Now, obviously you're not gonna completely vanquish routine. 9:31 It'll always be there waitin' for you to embrace it again. 9:38 So having a better understanding of what creativity is is gonna help you. 9:41 Now, we see forms of creativity in every industry, every facet of life. 9:46 everybody, at some point, has done something creative. 9:52 That's just true to our nature. 9:56 Here's a guy who decided to see what Yoda would look like as a real person. 10:00 Here's an architect who created a building based off of musical instruments. 10:06 Somebody's a geek, and they love The Big Bang 10:12 Theory, and took recycled keys and made this mosaic. 10:14 Somebody had an old iMac. 10:18 And turned it into a cat bed. 10:21 Maybe you like science fiction and meat. 10:26 Here's a guy who mosaiced his car with a bunch of trinkets. 10:33 This guy drives around Seattle everywhere. 10:38 Here's another guy that took his mode 10:41 of transportation and shaved a pattern into it. 10:44 You can get creative with your facial hair. 10:49 Creativity comes in, I know, some of those are like wrong. 10:55 the, my whole point is anybody can be creative. 11:00 Now the Webster's definition of creativity is 11:06 the use of imagination or original ideas. 11:09 So in essence creativity is directly tied to imaginative thinking. 11:14 You can also say that creativity is how you think. 11:20 Now, there is a saying by Einstein that's probably way overused. 11:26 That imagination is more important than knowledge and all that. 11:31 That's all well and good. 11:34 But my favorite quote from Einstein is one that's a 11:35 little more obscure, that not a lot of people talk about. 11:38 And but yet it came from Einstein. 11:42 And I think it plays a key role in pursuing creativity. 11:45 And, and that quote is, play is the highest form of research, Einstein said. 11:49 And I think that's the key when it comes to 11:54 pursuing creativity outside the context of work, it's essentially playing. 11:56 Now when you pursue creativity like that, kids have no problem with that kind of 12:03 creativity, with that kind of imaginative thinking, it comes natural for em. 12:10 So it's all in, it's all about embracing that kind of child like 12:15 attitude as you pursue creativity outside of work in what ever form it is. 12:19 Here's another example. 12:25 This is Hoang Tran, and he actually graduated 12:28 as a business major out of San Francisco. 12:31 And he saw somebody who was doing sculptures with 12:34 Crayola crayons and he decided to give it a shot. 12:38 And so here's some Star Wars ones he did. 12:42 I thought those were pretty cool, if you're into Game of Thrones. 12:47 And my daughter likes these, Adventure Time. 12:52 It's like an acid trip watching that cartoon. 12:57 And my favorite, Big Lebowski. 13:01 >> [LAUGH]. 13:05 >> So creativity can be like this pursuing creativity. 13:06 It can also be like I said, a little more risky, a little more 13:12 outside of what you would consider your creative wheel house or your comfort zone. 13:16 And that's okay. 13:22 Here's, here's another example. 13:25 This is Dale Price. 13:27 He's an he's an Iraq vet and he decided when 13:28 his kids were going to school, he wanted to,they were 13:31 a little hesitant about going to a new school and 13:34 he wanted to encourage them to not worry about it, and 13:37 that it's gonna be fun and they can enjoy it, 13:41 so he decided to motivate them by dressing up in 13:44 a different costume every day, going out in front of 13:46 his house and waving at the bus when it came by. 13:50 Now, besides the embarrassment factor, you know, 13:53 he got really creative with his, his outfits. 13:58 So, he might dress up as a pirate or Batman. 14:02 Or a pharaoh. 14:08 And all those are pretty safe. 14:09 But he pushes it a little bit, you know, he did the Little Mermaid. 14:11 I 14:16 don't know what I'd think if that was my dad doing that. 14:18 That'd kinda freak me out. 14:20 But it, it may be uncomfortable but it's still creative. 14:22 That's the whole point. 14:26 He's okay with that risk, and he did a whole web site called Waving at the Bus. 14:27 You can check it out online. 14:33 There's a lot of other pictures there. 14:34 So, 14:36 the common creative denominator, in context of 14:39 design, creativity is based on distinct objectives. 14:43 You have a client. 14:47 You have their product service or their company, and you 14:48 know exactly what they're trying, what audience they're trying to reach. 14:52 What marketing message they're trying to facilitate. 14:55 And your designing within that framework. 14:58 Creativity when you pursue it outside of the context of work can be anything. 15:01 You don't have to worry about aligning it with other people's expectations. 15:08 Remember, creativity it's how you think, and 15:13 not every idea you're gonna come up with, 15:18 even if you're pursuing it just for the fun is gonna be a good one. 15:20 But that's okay, failure is all part of the creative process, whether 15:23 you're doing it for a client, whether you're doing it on your own. 15:27 So creativity is, is how you think. 15:31 Creativity is a battle of the mind. 15:35 And being creative has more to do with how you arrive 15:38 at an idea, the process, than it is the idea itself. 15:42 In our industry the final result of creativity tends to get all the accolades. 15:47 But it's actually all the ideas that didn't work that 15:53 led up to that final solution, is what sums up creativity. 15:57 So it's okay to kinda be hesitant or fearful of certain things. 16:02 That's natural. 16:09 That should be expected. 16:10 And we're gonna get into that a little more 16:12 but there's something I need to cover first before we do that. 16:16 [NOISE]. 16:20 Now that's actually a roar of a lion. 16:37 And the whole reason I'm bringing this up, is 16:39 because, when you approach creative things, and you've ran into 16:43 this before, maybe you've never done a certain type of 16:48 design project, maybe you haven't worked with this client before. 16:51 And you know that they're at a higher 16:55 level than any other client you've worked with. 16:57 Whatever reason for it you're faced with intimidation 17:00 at times, you're faced with that fear factor. 17:04 And we've all faced this at one point or another and the common words of fear 17:08 are usually you know, you're not smart enough 17:12 you don't feel like you're qualified to do this. 17:15 You're not good enough. 17:18 You might think to yourself, you know, I'm gonna blow this. 17:20 Someone else could do this better than me. 17:25 You should just find a new job. 17:30 You know what? 17:31 I suck. 17:33 You know, and nobody is gonna like this talk. 17:35 >> [LAUGH]. 17:38 >> [LAUGH] 17:40 Now as I was, as I was thinking about this. 17:43 There is a story that came out a couple of years ago. 17:46 Under the Freedom of Information Act. 17:49 And it's all about what's called it's all 17:51 about the tactical deception unit in World War II. 17:54 This was a unit of troops made up of approximately 1200 creative people, 17:58 and they were affectionately called the ghost army, that's their patch there, 18:04 and what these people did, they're made up of artists, musicians, sound 18:09 technicians, stage production prop makers. 18:14 And they were facilitated by the army 18:20 to create fake things like this inflatable tank. 18:23 So they'd go to the theater war in Europe, and 18:27 they'd set up a fake battalion of inflatable tanks and planes. 18:29 They would have people dress up in character like 18:35 they're a general and somebody would drive em through town. 18:37 And they'd stop at coffee houses and they'd act out something and purposely 18:41 say it louder than they should so somebody else would over hear it. 18:45 Their sound technicians would drive through the woods with these big 18:49 speakered vehicles and they'd play sounds of tank movements and troop movements. 18:53 The whole reason they did this was to facilitate a ruse against the German army. 18:59 And that ruse worked because it capitalized on 19:07 one thing, and that creativity was driven by fear. 19:10 It was fear in the Germans' mind that painted 19:16 this picture of what they thought was a legitimate threat. 19:20 It was wholly illegitimate. 19:24 Now, in context of the lying seeking out their prey, the 19:28 whole reason a lion roars is because it paralyzes their prey. 19:33 When they roar, the prey freaks out. 19:38 They can't think straight, and they just freeze. 19:41 And then they become the lion's next victim. 19:44 Fear in context of creativity works much the same way. 19:47 When you're intimidated by something, when you start fearing a project coming 19:51 down the pike, and you know you're gonna have to work on it. 19:56 That can cause fear to raise it's head. 20:00 And you might have some of these thoughts I've went over, or other ones. 20:03 And it's that that's gonna cripple your ability to come up with those ideas. 20:08 The next thing I, I, I wanna show you is gonna explain a little more on that. 20:15 Now, the thing you have to remember though is fear in 20:20 terms of the lion and its prey is a legitimate one. 20:26 The prey is gonna become the lion's next meal. 20:31 Fear in context of creativity is wholly illegitimate. 20:34 It should be expected. 20:39 You shouldn't be surprised that you're intimidated or that you have fear during 20:41 certain projects or certain things that you're 20:48 faced with working on as a designer. 20:50 That's part of the creative process. 20:53 So, recognizing it when it happens and how to deal 20:56 with it is how you use it to your advantage. 21:00 So, because of that, we need to talk 21:08 a little bit about how fear effects thinking. 21:10 In order to understand why you struggle with being 21:13 creative you need to understand how fear effects it. 21:15 Now, your brain has a billion cells called neurons. 21:20 And each of these use electrical impulses that they send to one 21:24 another to, to formulate thought and come up with ideas on anything. 21:28 Now, these brain wave activities can be measured into five distinct categories. 21:35 And these five categories of brain waves the first one is called beta. 21:41 Beta is normal consciousness, all of you are in beta mode right now unless 21:46 of course I'm boring, then you're gonna be in another one coming up here. 21:51 So, beta mode, mode is normal. 21:56 You walk, you think, you drink. 21:58 You know, that's, that's normal activity. 22:01 Alpha is another form of brain wave activity. 22:03 And, this is the state just prior to 22:07 falling asleep and just prior to waking up. 22:09 This is where in you dream. 22:12 This is where your dreams happen. 22:13 Theta is your subconscious. 22:17 Delta is when you're fully asleep. 22:22 But the one I want to focus on today is Gamma. 22:26 Gamma is a higher mental activity, and this is where ideas are formed. 22:31 Gamma level thinking is the realm of thinking where ideas are created. 22:37 So, creativity is birthed from these eureka moments 22:44 where you reach a gamma level of thinking. 22:50 You, you've all sat down and you've 22:53 brainstormed out ideas and you're working through 22:55 and, and you're doing stuff and you're 22:58 not really liking it and then something clicks. 23:01 And you start hitting on something, you go hey, there's an idea there. 23:04 And it sparks another idea. 23:08 That's where you break through your normal alpha 23:09 consciousness, and you reach a gamma level of thinking. 23:13 Now, gamma level thinking isn't sustainable. 23:15 Meaning, you can't walk around all day in gamma mode. 23:18 It's impossible. 23:21 So, it's all about what is gonna facilitate you and help you to 23:22 reach that level of thinking when you need to reach that level of thinking. 23:26 Well, part of the thing that removes the stumbling block to 23:30 reaching that level is by pursuing creativity outside the context of work. 23:34 Now, 23:39 when you're trying to come up with an idea, your 23:42 brain is processing these thoughts and it leads to a creative idea. 23:47 You have to be able to get to gamma. 23:54 If you're intimidated or fear sets in, fear literally blocks your brain from 23:56 being able to reach that gamma level state of thinking that leads to idea formation. 24:01 So, it's all about recognizing when fear comes on the scene and realizing 24:08 that that is your earmark and your opportunity to come up with a great idea. 24:14 It's on the other side, so use fear as a fulcrum for your creativity. 24:20 Now, creativity and exploring creativity outside of work 24:27 it's not a hard thing. 24:35 I don't want you to think of this as a, a, 24:36 a, a task that's gonna be a pain to pull off. 24:38 It really isn't. 24:41 The reason why it's important, though, 24:43 is it's less fearful than work-oriented creativity. 24:45 It's less fearful because there's no deadlines or client expectation. 24:49 It allows you to be curious without having to qualify it. 24:53 You don't have to explain your ideas or sell it to anybody else but yourself. 24:58 It lets you get used to failing with little or no embarrassment. 25:02 No one else has to know you're doing it but you. 25:06 It's fun and you only have to satisfy yourself. 25:10 You have complete creative control. 25:13 Now, this type of free range creativity is what I call smart risk. 25:16 And it'll improve your ability to fight for you more effectively when you face 25:21 creative challenges and so you want to use fear to your full advantage. 25:25 So, you want to let your curiosity flow. 25:32 You don't want to be the Dead Sea. 25:38 Creativity is like water; you want to keep it moving and changing and 25:42 flowing to stay fresh and relevant or else it can get stagnant fast. 25:46 And the best way to do that is 25:51 through spontaneous, liberal doses of curiosity on a 25:52 regular basis to neutralize routine and prevent it 25:56 from getting a foothold in your daily workflow. 26:00 Now, here's another example. 26:04 This is Marc Sparfel. 26:06 He's an artist based out of Barcelona, Spain. 26:07 Ane he does a lot of traditional painting. 26:10 And on his way to buy paint, to do a new painting, he was walking through the 26:13 streets of Barcelona and he noticed that people were throwing away old furniture. 26:18 So, he spotted some of it, and he didn't really 26:24 know why, he just felt like that's kind of a waste. 26:27 So he took the chair, brought it back to his studio, and he started 26:32 collecting furniture, and he really wasn't sure what he was gonna do with it. 26:35 But it led to a whole new realm of artwork for him. 26:39 He created sculptures from it. 26:43 So, it's a, a good example of pursuing creativity in, 26:47 in a new way that he otherwise would have never tried. 26:51 So, the best way to exercise your curiosity 26:56 is to blow up your routine with TNT. 26:59 That is, try new things. 27:03 Stretching your comfort zone doesn't have to be difficult. 27:05 Here are some easy detonation methods you can use in your 27:10 daily, your daily pursuit of creativity to facilitate it to a greater degree. 27:17 Now, the first one here, this, this is a pretty simple one. 27:23 Drive a new route to work. 27:27 Now that doesn't seem, you know, very unique or 27:29 whatever but I used to work for upper deck there, 27:33 there in California and I worked there about three years 27:37 and it was about an hour drive to one way. 27:39 And I got bored driving the same way to work. 27:42 So I'd, I, every now and then I'd just take a different exit and just 27:44 find my way to work in a different way, just to change, change the visual diet. 27:48 And that's why I suggest this. 27:54 Routine is developed because you get familiar with things. 27:56 And, as visually based creative people, doing this helps you notice new things, 28:01 sparks different thoughts, and all of that can play a part in leading to new things. 28:07 Now, a good example of this is my friend Paul Howalt. 28:12 Paul 28:15 was one of the original designers with Charles Anderson who came 28:18 up with that classic look that Charles Anderson is known for. 28:22 But Paul's also a good photographer as 28:27 well as being a designer and illustrator and 28:29 so he started driving out of his way 28:32 and he started noticing faces in different things. 28:36 And so, that inspired him to create a Instagram account called I See Faces. 28:40 And this is the, some of the photographs he takes and posts on there. 28:46 Another easy thing you can do is leave your work environment to do ideation. 28:50 Now, I originally got this idea from Sam Harrison. 28:56 And who wrote a, a great book, by the way, called Zing. 29:01 And this is, this really transformed the way my creative process works. 29:04 I can't do concepting or, or thumbnail 29:10 sketches or anything like that within my studio. 29:13 I have to leave it and go somewhere else 29:16 and for some reason it frees up my thinking. 29:18 And it enables me to reach that level that comes up with better ideas. 29:22 So, that might be something you might want to try. 29:26 Get out of your comfort zone. 29:29 Go somewhere else. 29:31 Do some 29:33 Lewis and Clarking. 29:36 All I mean by that is spend time exploring new locations both near and far. 29:38 Especially when you travel, it's a great time to do it. 29:43 If you're not from this area and you have a 29:46 few extra hours, just walk around town just to explore things. 29:48 The next example I wanna share with you is Freya Jobbins. 29:53 She's actually, she's actually a police officer in 29:55 Australia and she got injured on the job. 29:59 And when she was going through college she was really interested in art, and she took 30:01 art as part of her courses going through college, but she didn't major in that. 30:06 Well, now that she was injured and she didn't want 30:12 a desk job, she decided, she wasn't sure what to 30:15 do, but she wanted to do something with art, but 30:19 she wasn't sure how she wanted to pull that off. 30:22 A friend of her, a friend of hers invited her to 30:24 go to a bunch of these what do you call it? 30:28 Not a yard sale but, flea market, and she had never been to one. 30:33 She's like, no, I don't really want to go. 30:37 Come on, you need to get out. 30:39 You're, you're just depressing yourself. 30:40 So she took the time to go with her friends. 30:42 She went to this one flea market and she saw a 30:44 box of all these doll parts and it sparked an idea, 30:48 and that lead to her creating her artwork which is made 30:52 of nothing but doll parts and she creates some really cool ones. 30:56 So, all because she decided to, kind of, step out of her comfort 31:03 zone and, and go somewhere and observe things she otherwise would've never done. 31:06 So, take some time to explore. 31:14 Another easy thing you can do is observe the moment. 31:16 Pay attention to details other over, others 31:20 overlook in what most would consider mundane situations. 31:23 This next example, this is Eric Barclay. 31:28 He's an illustrator based out of the U.K. 31:31 and he noticed, when he was cleaning up his 31:33 kitchen one day and he is getting ready 31:35 to throw away this container, it sparked an idea. 31:38 He just thought, it's kind of a waste. 31:42 We buy these products and we just toss them and that sparked an idea. 31:44 As he looked at this container, he observed it and saw it 31:49 as something else it could be, and he turned it into this. 31:52 And that made him think, what else could I look 31:58 at that most people would consider trash and turn into art. 32:01 So, he looked at these. 32:04 And they became these. 32:07 So, it's all about pursuing creativity. 32:11 Nobody, obviously, hired him to do this. 32:14 He didn't do it because he's making a ton of money off it. 32:16 He did it to be creative. 32:19 And it kind of opened up a whole new format for him. 32:21 Now, this next one might be a little hard 32:27 for some of you, but set your favorites aside. 32:29 You all have your pet fonts you always use, you always gravitate 32:33 towards, they're probably in some special little folder you created for them. 32:38 Turn them off. 32:42 Try something else. 32:44 Force yourself to not revert to what's your comfort zone. 32:45 I, I mean this applies to me you know, I gotta love for din and I 32:51 had to take it off my machine so I wouldn't be tempted to use it anymore. 32:57 So that's a good thing, maybe it's color pallets. 33:00 Maybe it's trying different color pallets, different design styles. 33:05 Maybe you listen to a new genre of music you don't even think you would like. 33:10 Read a novel you'd normally avoid. 33:16 Start visiting new websites, etc. 33:19 It's about tapping the unexpected. 33:21 The whole reason you'll discover unexpected things is when you take 33:24 the time to do something you don't think you would like. 33:29 That's when you make those discoveries. 33:33 Now, this next artist I wanna show you, this is Jason 33:35 Mercier and he, when he was growing up, his grandmother really influenced him. 33:41 He needed to buy art supplies but he didn't have money, so he 33:47 went to his grandmother and he said, can you give me money to go 33:49 buy some more paint and canvas and his grandmother looked at him and 33:53 said, you don't need that to create art, just use whatever is around you. 33:57 And that inspired him to look at every day things. 34:03 And create art from it. 34:07 And now, he's hired for, for, from companies like Jack Links to 34:08 do a beef jerky, you know, pimping bigfoot or whatever they call that campaign. 34:13 But, he takes everyday objects, so here's a Conan O'Brien 34:19 portrait and it's all made up of just found things. 34:22 And so, he likes going to junk yards and thrift 34:27 stores, and buying things, so he can make these collages. 34:32 Here's another one, Tina Fey and Donald Trump. 34:35 If you find it hard to stay motivated to do this 34:45 type of thing, find somebody else who you can collaborate with, 34:48 somebody you trust, somebody that you can do something crazy and 34:52 they're not gonna make fun of you, cuz that wont help. 34:55 Here's another one. 35:00 A lot of designers tend to cringe on this. 35:01 If any of you are familiar with my lynda.com courses you'll know this is 35:03 a big one for me, and that is, make drawing a, a creative habit. 35:08 unfortunately, it seems like the skill of drawing 35:15 has been depreciated a lot in our industry. 35:17 I think drawing, more than ever, regardless of 35:19 how forward digital advances, is still design's best friend. 35:23 Now, some of you might be thinking, but dude, I can't draw worth crap. 35:28 You know, I knew somebody would be thinking that, so that's okay. 35:32 My dad he can't draw worth crap. 35:35 So to prove it, I asked him to draw a piece of crap, and this is what he did. 35:39 [LAUGH] 35:44 He even did a different different perspective. 35:46 Now, my, my dad's pretty flexible with creativity cuz my mom's creative. 35:53 She does paintings and my kids are creative. 35:58 They're always drawing and stuff and so, when my oldest daughter, Savannah, 36:02 asked my dad, hey, can I draw on the back of your head. 36:06 My dad just went for it so. 36:09 [LAUGH] 36:11 Now, when I'm talking about drawing, I'm not thinking everybody 36:14 here needs to become a illustrator or a fine artist. 36:17 That's not the point of drawing. 36:21 There's some cognitive aspects about drawing 36:23 we're gonna cover in just a second. 36:25 But it can be as simple as doodling. 36:26 Now, I encourage people to carry a sketchbook, but if 36:30 you know me really well, you know I don't like sketchbooks. 36:34 Cuz I just get hung up on, what if I screw up and 36:38 then I can't rip it out of the book, and it freaks me out. 36:41 And so, I, I admire people who can fill a sketchbook. 36:44 I know people who have a whole shelf full of sketch books 36:49 and it's really cool and I envy it because I can't do that. 36:51 It's just, I don't know, there's something about it that hangs me up. 36:55 So, I use notepads and I draw all the time on notepads. 36:58 But, when you get to the end of the notepad, you have this piece of cardboard. 37:02 And I always, I don't know why, I always felt 37:07 guilty like oh I'm sorry, you're going in the garbage. 37:09 [LAUGH] Like hey, all the other pages were good 37:12 enough and I get thrown in the garbage, you know. 37:14 Yeah, those are the head games I play with myself all the time. 37:18 And so, just out of some strange paper guilt, I 37:21 start throwing them in the bottom of my flat file. 37:25 And it finally filled up where I didn't have 37:29 enough room to close the drawer and so, I 37:31 decided, I need to start doing something with these, 37:34 and that led to what I call cardboard doodles. 37:37 And all it takes is this. 37:40 We're note talking very complex. 37:42 I usually kinda draw out just the perimeter of the shape. 37:44 Cut that out, and I just start drawing on it. 37:48 Basically, it's a glorified doodle on a piece 37:53 of cardboard, and I make these little cardboard doodles. 37:56 And so, my whole office has these hanging out everywhere. 37:59 Now, the whole reason I'm pushing drawing is because 38:04 drawing, like I said earlier, is design's best friend. 38:06 And the reason why it is, is there's four ways that you learn. 38:10 And those come through the four modalities of either 38:17 visuals, auditory, reading and writing or kinesthetic or touch. 38:20 Now, in order for your brain to engage on the level that you begin to 38:26 learn something, you have to engage at least 38:30 two of these modalities at the same time. 38:33 So, maybe it's reading and auditory, maybe it's an audio book. 38:36 You start learning something. 38:41 Or, you can engage one modality. 38:43 And if you have an emotional response to 38:46 it, then you'll link, you'll start learning there too. 38:49 Now, here's the great thing about drawing. 38:52 Once again, I'm not talking about full 38:56 blown illustration, I'm not talking about fine art. 38:57 I'm talking about drawing in any form, doodle or otherwise. 39:00 When you draw, you engage all four modalities at the same time. 39:04 The more you draw, the better you get. 39:10 The better you get, the more you're gonna enjoy it. 39:12 You'll get the emotional factor as well. 39:14 It's a super charger for ideation, it's a 39:16 super charger for working through and problem solving design. 39:19 So I highly encourage you to make drawing a habit. 39:24 And the tools are easy, as simple as a pad of paper, pen or a pencil. 39:28 Most important one, probably the most practical, is just have fun. 39:35 It does no good to try to improve and pursue creativity and do 39:41 something you really don't like to do, that you're not gonna stick with it. 39:45 So whatever you do, have fun with it. 39:49 And I thought this was a great example. 39:52 My friend Denise Gallagher, she's an illustrator out of Louisiana, 39:54 and when she makes pancakes, she draws with the batter. 39:58 And I just love, and she's always posting them on Facebook. 40:02 So, I really love the artwork she creates with that. 40:05 It doesn't matter what the format is. 40:09 Now, creativity can, can be pursued in a way respond to something. 40:12 As we discussed earlier, fear is a negative energy. 40:18 But you can use it as a catalyst for your creativity. 40:22 And there was a story that came out a couple 40:26 of years ago that I just thought was just incredibly cool. 40:27 And it, it involved some risk, because there were certain people 40:31 that would probably view it initially in a, in the wrong way. 40:35 And there's a designer in Germany who came up with this design. 40:40 And he designed this specifically for t-shirts. 40:45 They printed them on t-shirts. 40:49 And then he went to a Neo Nazi convention and gave them out for free. 40:50 Now, why would a designer do that? 40:55 Why would you want to facilitate, that kind of hate? 40:57 That was the, that was the, his risk 41:01 to it, of how people might perceive that initially. 41:06 But what he didn't tell anybody is that when, and he gave them all away 41:10 at this conference, this neo-nazi conference, when they 41:14 took it home and they washed their shirt. 41:17 This would appear on the shirt. 41:20 And it's a message about, you need to leave this hateful lifestyle. 41:24 You need to make a positive change in your life and move in a different direction. 41:29 And because this designer didn't worry about people. 41:35 Misinterpreting his motives, he did this and it's already lead to 41:39 like, seven people kind of coming out of that movement, and I 41:45 thought that was a great example of taking a negative thing 41:48 and using it in a creative way to create a positive outcome. 41:52 Now,um, most of the examples actually all the 41:57 examples I'm showing you it's not my work. 42:01 And some people have asked me, well why don't you 42:04 show your work when you're talking about stuff like this? 42:07 Well mainly because I look at my work all the time, it get's boring. 42:11 It's like I, I like seeing what other people are 42:14 doing, now I do a lot of branding work so. 42:16 I work with a lot of agencies, a lot of in-house art departments for companies and 42:19 I create, I have my own clients and I create a lot of brand identity projects. 42:24 Now I'm passionate about logo design. 42:29 I really love it. 42:32 It's fun, it's probably the favorite, my favorite type of 42:32 project to pursue, but something that really, really annoys me. 42:35 And I'll admit, I'm kind of a reactionary. 42:40 So,when I see a website like this, it kind of really irritates me. 42:43 $19 logos, seasoned pro working for peanuts. 42:50 Yeah! 42:54 I see that and I go okay, how do I sarcastically respond to that? 42:57 At least, that's what I was thinking when I. 43:00 I had gotten an Ipad, and I was playing around with Adobe Ideas, and 43:03 I'm like, I wonder if I could draw a logo on this, you know? 43:07 And I just did this crappy little one, and I 43:10 gave myself five minutes, and it actually turned into this logo. 43:13 Five minute logo, and I turned it into a website just for the fun of it. 43:16 And I did it on a lark and launched it on Twitter one night. 43:22 That was like, on black, Black Friday and said 43:28 for the next 24 hours, anybody who orders pays 43:31 me $5, you get five minutes of my time and I'll draw you a crappy logo on my iPad. 43:36 And I got like. 43:41 45 orders and I'm going, are you kidding me? 43:42 And so I create this website just for the 43:46 fun of it, and it's kind of a creative exercise 43:50 for me cuz I give myself five minutes to do 43:53 it and the rules of engagement kinda work like this. 43:55 The first rule is. 44:00 You can make any suggestion for the 44:02 design, but more than likely, you won't like 44:03 it, because you're a cheap-ass. 44:08 You're only paying me five bucks. 44:11 So that's the first one, and this all on my 44:13 site, and people still pay me $5 to do it. 44:15 You probably won't like it, nor will you want to use it. 44:18 And the next one is, if you want to 44:23 change the design it will cost you another five dollars. 44:25 And the first two rules apply. 44:30 And the last one is no whining. 44:32 People still order, still order, even though they know all these rules. 44:34 Here's somebody who is from the south. 44:42 I had a dog named Tyson, and I 44:45 did this. 44:54 This next guy does motivational talks and he had a talk 44:54 called making, almost like elevator pitches, called, Make Small Talk Sexy. 44:59 And so I did this one. 45:04 [LAUGH] His exact quote, I can't use that. 45:06 Nope. 45:15 Now, some people read the site they, they understand 45:17 the tongue-in-cheek nature of it and they go with it. 45:22 Other people, I don't think they read it and they just, they take it seriously. 45:25 So there's a marketing director for a pharmaceutical company in 45:30 Florida who hired me, and so I did this one. 45:34 She, she got mad at me. 45:43 I tried to explain to her, I go no 45:47 really, like, the most pill poppers are in Florida. 45:48 That's. 45:51 [LAUGH] She didn't buy it. 45:52 Some, some people get it, and they go with the flow, they think it's funny. 45:55 An ad agency that does pancakes every Friday for their employees ordered this. 45:59 Some guy creating his own barbecue sauce, so I did this for him. 46:03 I'm not exactly sure what this is but I just thought it was kind of funny. 46:09 Unicorn. 46:13 Now, this sign has gone viral a few times and one time it did 46:17 it's like somebody posted it on the bong bong equivalent of Brazil. 46:23 I start getting all these Brazilian things, 46:28 and this one I actually thought was okay. 46:30 I didn't think it was too bad. 46:34 Now it also went viral another time, 46:36 and I think the website was churchmarketingsucks.com. 46:39 And I get, I get an order from a lady 46:44 and she goes, we're doing an vacation bible study and 46:47 we need one that's called ,This Little Light of Mine, 46:49 and I'm going, oh, I know what I'm doing for this. 46:52 [LAUGH] That's gonna scare the children. 46:57 [LAUGH] I, it might, but it's biblical. 47:04 Another church called High Peak Baptist Church 47:09 asked me to do one, so this is the type for that. 47:19 Now, the reason why I'm not showing you the mark that goes with it, 47:22 I'll show you that in a second, I'm gonna do a little freebie here. 47:25 I just want you to guess based off of the name. 47:28 What do you think I did? 47:31 And the first person to get it gets 47:32 a free three month premium membership to lynda.com. 47:34 >> [CROSSTALK] >> Nope. 47:39 >> Marijuana. 47:42 >> You got it. 47:43 >> [LAUGH]. 47:44 So whoever said marijuana, just come up to me afterwards and 47:50 I'll get your email and I'll get you the code you need. 47:54 Yeah. 47:57 So if you want to, if you want to order your own, you can go to that website or 47:58 go to Facebook and you can see all the, the ones I post in the gallery there, so. 48:04 So a few more things I'm gonna share with you and then we'll, we'll call it good. 48:11 And this next thing, it's about set a good example. 48:15 Now, the whole reason I'm bringing this 48:19 up is if you're gonna pursue creativity outside 48:20 the realm of work, creativity for creativity's sake, 48:23 it's okay to do it for a purpose. 48:27 You can donate your time. 48:30 At least once a year, I tried to do a pro bono 48:33 work for a charity or a non-profit just to do design for good. 48:37 Now my example of, of a good example of this. 48:43 Is my good friend Justin Ahrens, he runs Rule29 based out of Geneva, right, 48:49 it's a suburb of Chicago, and Justin has a 48:54 client by the name of Life in Abundance, and they're an 48:59 NGO based out of Kenya, and they go into African countries, into. 49:03 Into the slums, and they help establish microeconomic solutions and train the 49:08 people new skills so that they can make a livelihood and support their families. 49:14 So it's a, it's a really good thing and his firm handles all their branding. 49:19 Does all their collateral, doesn't charge them anything for it. 49:26 And it helps facilitate that. 49:29 And so, I think what he does is fabulous. 49:31 One of the recent ones they did is called Konjo. 49:34 And this is all about training the local people new skills. 49:38 In this case, how to. 49:43 Create and fabricate these handmade sandal's based on a 49:46 renewable material like tires and leather, and recycled goods. 49:49 And they come out with products like this. 49:54 So, it's really cool. 49:57 So, Justin's been a really great example of using his talent whatever it is. 49:58 And using it in a way to benefit other people. 50:05 So, I encourage everybody to do that pick somebody once a year to do that for. 50:07 Whether it's local or otherwise. 50:12 So the last thing the last thing I want to share with you. 50:16 And this is probably one of my favorite, favorite quotes. 50:21 Is success is a journey not a destination. 50:26 Now, as you pursue creativity outside of work and you're 50:33 doing it just for fun it's gonna make you feel uncomfortable 50:37 at times, especially if it's something you've never done before, 50:42 or if you're not sure you're gonna be good at it. 50:45 That's part of being creative, that's part of creativity, 50:47 part of creativity is trying things and discovering that you're 50:51 not good at and shifting to something else and 50:55 unless you do that you're never gonna discover and grow. 50:58 It's all about growth, it's all about trying new things. 51:01 Now, I struggled a little bit with how to end this. 51:04 Like, how do you end a talk like this and. 51:07 And so I decided to end on a positive note by talking about a tombstone. 51:09 I know, it's kinda weird but just bare with me, it'll kinda make sense. 51:15 this, this is a specific tombstone, Mel Blanc was the voice of the 51:20 Looney Tunes and Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, all those characters for Warner Brothers. 51:24 Now I wasn't looking for this for my talk. 51:30 But I kinda, stumbled upon it and it made me think about some things. 51:34 And the first thing I thought about when I was looking at tombstone is. 51:38 You know, at some point in history, somebody. 51:43 I don't know if it was creative or otherwise. 51:48 Decided to sum up life in this graphic manner. 51:50 You were born on this date, you died on this date. 51:53 But as I was looking at this, I realized, you know, the dates aren't what matters. 51:57 What really matters is the dash. 52:02 All of you are dashes. 52:07 We don't know how long our dash is gonna be, but all 52:09 I'm encouraging you to do is take the time to try new things. 52:13 Take the time to do creative things and be curious 52:18 and pursue things outside of work, outside of your comfort zone. 52:22 Because that's how you're going to facilitate 52:27 your ability to face those projects when fear 52:30 sets in and realize well screw fear, I'm going to use it as a fulcrum. 52:33 I'm going to push through it and not worry about it. 52:39 So, it's all about getting creative with your dash. 52:42 And thanks for letting me talk to you. 52:48 And if you wanna download all the notes you can grab them here. 52:51 Thanks. 52:55
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