We’ve all been there: tight schedule, and no fuel for the fire. How does one combat the dreaded block? There are lots of interesting ways that will instantly produce results. Let’s try them out.
- It’s like what it sounds, think of things backwards.
“When everyone zig’s, zag.” —Marty Neumeier (The Brand Gap)
These are words to live by. This quote can mean many things. We can apply it to thinking about ideas backwards. Take a design you’re stuck on and flip it around, try to give it some negative space:
If we’re going inside out, why not down side up?
Now all the sudden we have some character to it. Now maybe you can start seeing something you haven’t before. An eye form in the “e” maybe? Some sort of abstract shape, maybe even a symbol starts to form where earlier you were stuck. A lot of times it just takes the act of doing (don’t just think, do), even if it’s silly or may seem like a bad idea. Don’t be afraid to experiment.
It’s not necessary to be as literal as this, although thinking backwards helps to get out of a rut. Designers tend to get pigeon holed in the comfortable, so get uncomfortable! If you’re stuck often it’s because you’re not satisfied with you idea, which is a good mentality to have–in moderation. If you never get stuck, ask yourself why? It’s likely you’re not challenging yourself.
Have you ever looked into a photo of someones eye, or a glass that is high resolution?
You will notice a lot of interesting things you never thought were there. This concept is endless with everything from photography to poetry, it’s used often.
Here is a fun one: what does the client stand for? what are their values? do they have a taste? a smell? a texture? create a character around these things. If you need inspiration, check out Disney characters. Really, I’m not kidding. Disney artists were masters of this:
Look at the colors, and shapes, even postures. Evil characters had hard, sharp and abrasive edges. The good guys were always rounded yet strong flowing lines and shapes. Every single character has a purpose and unique personality through and through, as should our design.
This last one is a very nebulous concept. However, fear not! It is definitely worth diving in to. There are two main reasons; there are countless sources of inspiration, also this allows us not to fall into the trap of repeating forms. Have you ever looked at ornament in history? you should.
here is a page out of a book I like to keep around for inspiration:
If that isn’t inspiration, I don’t know what is. History is full of them.
let try some of this in the logotype:
Some book recommendations:
Lets do a recap:
- Think backwards
- Exaggerate, it’s in the details!
- Know your History
Good luck with your creative woes!