What a busy 10 days it’s been!
Since my last post i have been to see Brighton Uni’s end of year show, Seen my girlfriend silence a stag do mid-swing, been to Paris to see the sights and smells and got back in to the ryhtmn of work after having a nice week off! I’m on my laptop at the moment and haven’t gotten around to getting all the pictures i took on to this yet!. Something i will try and do this weekend!…Busy weekend ahead of Music, Drinking and some relaxing if i can get some time!
Last time also i posted I mentioned a book called “A technique for producing ideas“, alot smaller than i orginally had expected but by no means lacking in content. It covered the thinking behind the book is that it reiterates and drives home the process for how to generate ideas and think about a project whether it be design, business, music or a text the process is globally useable and based on 5 simple steps:
1) Gather materials – bother Mentally and physically. whether it is materials about the product, surrounding the product, Understand the product, how it works, what seperates it from others, what seperates its consumers from others, understand the market and also gather materials that you may use not only for the product, campaign or brief you are working on but for future products,campaigns and briefs build a book of tricks and scrap books that you can use for reference and inspiration or as a trigger for the future.
2) Explore and tear it apart in great detail what you have gathered – Look at these articles, notes or facts in as many different ways as you can think of. Look at other writings like Veblen’s theory of the leisure classes. Anything to break apart and explore what you have collected to see some relationship or way of fulfilling the brief…..In otherwords EAT, SLEEP and BREATHE it!
3) STEP AWAY FROM THE PROJECT – Sounds simple enough to do, but apparently this is the kind of ” now leave to simmer on a low heat” part to the recipe. Do anything that inspires you. Listen to music, read, go to the cinema, sleep on it even (linking to step four)
4) Ideas will come to you from out of nowhere – (apparently)…Providing you have done your part for the previous stages, ideas or idea shall come to you some way or how. in the shower, before you fall asleep, as you just wake up anything. And there you have your seedling idea.
5) To complete the process – Show the world your idea and put it in an open forum for discussion and exploration. your idea might be OK but with this stage it becomes polished, you are able to look at it in the cold light of day and with fresh eyes take comments from others and possibly improve and develop your idea further.
This is my interpretation of the book, and believe me it was not easy to read it on a beach in brighton or on a busy commuter train home but go and check it out. I will be looking forwards to trying this method out on a project that is not on a restricted timeline, as i think that the process might take me time to get to grips with and become second nature, to do without thinking about what it is that i am doing. Some people can produce nice aesthetically pleasing work, but it has no soul, no depth no concept. This is exactly why i am trying to gather my knowledge and my materials, both physically and mentally (WAYHAY!! i am already doing step 1 without realising it).
The next part of my journey to becoming a better designer or a creative thinker is to use my brain not just for thinkin about long processes but also to trin it to think of things without even thinking about them or what i am doing. Like doodling almost!. This is where another book I bought comes in to play called
“Recharge your design batteries” written by Jon O’Reilly and Tony Linkson this book has “creative challenges to stetch you imagination“. Little things that take 5 minutes to do, anything from drawing a monster a day to collecting things of inspiration. This is something i have been thinking about doing before i saw this book and i believe that a great way to do this would be to play games like pictionary or Hangman. Something that makes you use your head without going to deep in to it! yet helps your develop key skills every designer in my opinion should have, which is to be able to quickly sketch out ideas that people can easily recognise and understand or visualise. Stickmen are not good enough!