There are troves of posts on the subject of inspiration. There are great arguments negotiating where the line is drawn between inspired and stolen. There’s also a great quote from Chuck Close that made the Tumblr rounds. Basically, he says to stop reading and looking at shit and just get the work done already. I could almost agree, but I’ll be damned if I miss out on all that glorious time lounging around, flipping through magazines and reading my google reader.
For inspiration, of course.
I think it’s good for us to seek inspiration but there needs to be some limits, some…routine, maybe? It’s easy to get sucked into the internet (particularly when you have a turntable.fm chat dinging in your ears) and it can get stale, boring, routine in the worst sense of the word, so I get away from my desk. I look for inspiration elsewhere and I try to allow myself a specific amount of time to revel and ruminate before a project begins. So, I thought I’d share what we do because IT’S FRIGGIN AWESOME. Not to mention, inspiring.
This is the Phillips Exeter Library, part of the Phillips Exeter Academy (see super serious and world renowned prep school) in Exeter, New Hampshire. 20 minutes from our office. The architectural style of the building is Brutalist. I mean, really? Can that be any cooler? The architect who designed it was Louis Kahn and this building was his opus. Again, it’s 20 minutes from our office.
UPDATE! Congrats to our winners! Carolin, Dylan, Brendan and I each picked a winner from the great entries below. Carolin picked Matt, Dylan picked Amelie, Brendan picked Euan, and I picked Zara. We’ll each individually be in touch with the winners for your invite code. For those of you that didn’t win, make sure you follow @Designspiration on twitter or just search twitter for DSPN – lots of folks have invites to go around.
As designers, we’re always looking for fresh content and inspiration to discover and save to help give us that spark that pushes us down that next creative road. Sites like ffffound have served this purpose for a while, but, let’s be honest – spend 90 seconds on ffffound and you’ll be staring at boobies. I think it’s like one of those 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon things, but on ffffound, it’s impossible to click through 6 images without ending up in (albeit usually fairly tasteful) nudes – not particularly useful when looking for, say, branding inspiration.
Enter Designspiration, a new venture by Shelby White (aka Wanken, ironically, considering his new site is free of boobies). White posts regularly on his blog, as well as contributes to the ever-popular ISO50, where he has a pretty in-depth process piece about building DSPN. Designspiration seems to be off to a good, well-curated start – already some really great content in there. The site is really well-done too, with few distractions and clever UI enhancements throughout that make searching and discovering pretty fun. Also, legit attribution, which is nice.
DSPN is an invite-only community (for posting; viewing is open of course), but we have a couple of invites to give away. Keeping the posting community invite-only ensures that the quality of the content is as high as it can be, but I’m confident that quite a large majority of our faithful readers would be great content curators at DSPN. So we’re going to give a couple invites away. Leave a comment below this post with a link to an image that has inspired you lately – Something that really got the creative juices flowing. We’ll look at the responses and pick a few to offer invites. Contest closes on Friday.
I really, really, really need some uplifting inspiration today. I caught myself thinking, “Man, they don’t make things like they used to.” Apparently I am one thousand years old. On the plus side I love to collect things for you lovely readers. I love the drama, surprise and sheer boldness of these posters from the 70s. I also vouch for all the films, so you can also update your Netflix queue while you’re at work. Isn’t multitasking rad?
Can you imagine an illustrated New Moon poster? Like, not out of craft paper with hearts over the hotter dude’s abs? Ah, the good old days…enjoy!
In the spirit of posting commercials/videos, here is my favorite commercial of all time, Nike’s “Before”. Sweat shops and fraternities aside, this is an undeniably clever, energizing and beautiful little piece of film.
Written and produced by powerhouse global ad agency/expirement/school Wieden+Kennedy, who probably deserve another post altogether.