Here is the second installment of my “City Block” series. Really excited with how this one turned out. I was up late last night finishing it up and getting it ready to post today. I don’t know how many blocks will be in this series but its a fun little exercise on creativity! I never even know what the block will even look like to begin with.
Dribbble | 2,500 Followers & 2 shots on Popular page!
Was super excited when I saw that I might get two dribbble shots on the popular page. When it actually happened I was ecstatic! I don’t believe I’ve had two shots on the popular page at once. Additionally today, I reached 2,500 followers on dribbble which was mind blowing. In the past week, I’ve gained over 100 followers which has to be my best week to date on there. This is only the beginning though! There is definitely more to come and I can’t wait to show everyone what more I can do and create! If you haven’t had a chance to check out my profile on dribbble, don’t be a stranger! I’m hoping to post a shot daily for as long as I am able to!
Really excited I finally get to share this branding project. This was one of my last branding projects that I worked on at Focus Lab and probably one of my most favorite! The guys over at Druid just launched their new brand today and put together this pretty awesome blog post to announce it! (http://druid.io/blog/2014/07/23/five-tips-for-a-f-ing-great-logo.html) I really hope you all enjoy this brand as much as I do and everyone else at Focus Lab. Going to possibly post a few more shots over the next couple of weeks for you all to see more of the branding work we did for Druid so be on the lookout!
If you’d like to see the dribbble shot that I posted click here.
As an entrepreneurial freelancer, creativity likely plays a strong role in your business. But have you ever wondered what causes you to have your best ideas, or if there’s a way to improve creativity when you’re having an off day?
As it turns out, there’s a lot of research regarding what makes us creative and how we can increase it. Try experimenting with some of the tips below to boost creativity and inventive thinking.
Work when you’re sleepy.
Are you a night owl or an early bird? Either way, try reversing your schedule. One studyfound that people come up with more creative solutions when they work during their least alert time of day. So if you’re usually most awake in the early morning, try working late at night — and vice versa.
Play a video game.
Video games often get a bad rap, but a growing body of research shows that gaming improves creativity, decision-making, and perception.
One three-year study of 491 middle schoolers saw that students who played video games performed more creatively on a “standardized creativity test,” which measured tasks such as drawing pictures and writing stories. Cell phones, the internet, and computers did not have an effect on creativity.
Creativity boosts occurred regardless of what kind of video game was played, so don’t worry if you’d rather combat orcs than solve a puzzle.
Go for a walk.
Steve Jobs was known for his walking meetings. Thoreau, Tchaikovsky, and Beethoven all loved long walks as well. And filmmaker Werner Herzog has said that the world reveals itself “to people who travel on foot.”
As it turns out, there’s some science behind those steps. A new study by Stanford researchers found that walking, regardless of whether it’s inside or outdoors, boosts creative inspiration.
The study involved four experiments with 176 adults who were asked to think of alternate uses for a given object. Creative output increased by an average of 81% when participants were taking a walk, regardless of whether they sat before or after.
Move to a foreign country.
Dreaming of moving to Berlin? Research published by the American Psychological Association shows that people who have lived in foreign countries carry with them lifelong enhanced creativity skills. Entire countries can reap the benefits of this creativity boost as well; another study indicates that periods of immigration are a precursor to exceptional national achievements.
Or, just think about a faraway place.
Strangely, you may experience a similar creativity boost if you imagine places that are far away. In one study conducted at Indiana University, researchers found that people were better at solving insight puzzles when they were told that the puzzles came from Greece or California instead of a local lab.
Why does this work, exactly? Social psychologists speculate that experiencing “psychological distance” — i.e., thinking about things that are not occurring now, here, and to ourselves — causes our brains to think in more abstract ways.
This can be as literal as thinking about geographical difference, but it also works when people imagine working on projects for other people (versus themselves), or imagine problem-solving for the distant future versus the near-future.
Put restrictions on your project.
We tend to believe that we perform better when we have more freedom, but in terms of creativity, the opposite may be true. One theory dictates that purposely placing limitations on a project can increase invention. An often cited example is Green Eggs and Ham, which Dr. Seuss wrote using only 50 words in order to win a bet.
For an inspirational story regarding the power of restrictions, watch this TED Talk with the artist Phil Hansen. While in art school, Hansen developed a devastating hand tremor that prevented him from creating the pieces he loved — until a neurologist suggested he embrace this limitation… and transcend it.
Watch more comedy.
Reruns of Parks and Recreation may be working in your favor, as being relaxed and in a good mood can dramatically increase creative success. In a study by Mark Beeman, researchers found that people were better able to solve insight puzzles if they watched a stand-up comedy clip first, with the average success rate increasing by 20%.
Don’t sit in silence.
According to a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research, background noise can increase creativity as long as it is not too loud. So go ahead and play music while you work, or try hanging out at a local coffee shop.
Look at blue or green.
A study at the University of Munich found that looking at the color green, even for only two seconds, causes higher scores on creativity tests. In nature, green is linked to growth and development, so the color is thought to spur our desire for self-improvement and mastering tasks.
Similarly, a 2009 study at the University of British Columbia found creativity boosts occurred after looking at the color blue, which encourages relaxation, abstract thinking, and inventiveness. Try working in a blue room — or combine the two by filling a blue room with green plants!
Something that I’ve thought about making for a while, my Top 12 (I couldn’t pick between the last three) movie list. I’ve made many of those in the past and as time goes things change. But here it is at last. In correct order.
1. Jaws I still remember the first time I watched this movie when I was a little kid (maybe 4-5). I was on my mom’s bed in her room watching it while she was downstairs. I was sooo scared to get down from the bed because I thought if I swung my legs over a shark would come from under the bed and take a bite out of me! Haha I’ve always had an amazing imagination.
2. The Rocky Horror Picture Show First time I saw this movie I was 11 years old and my best friend at the time had a MASSIVE movie collection. One night while staying over at his house we were trying to figure out a movie to watch. He was like “I KNOW!!!” runs to one of the many VHS racks they had and comes back with this movie. He said it would be perfect to watch because my name is Rocky. First time watching it I was like O_O? But later on in high school I truly fell in love with it. If it wasn’t for this movie, I would have never met the love of my life.
3. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off Wow so this movies has always been close to the top of my top favorite movies of all time! I remember watching this all the time with my Granny. When ever I was sick and staying at her house from school, we would watch this movie. Every time I watch it I think about her. Its really funny because when I got to spend time with my brother in San Diego earlier this month, he told me she used to sit him down in front of the tv and play this same movie! Haha I miss my Granny.
4. Forrest Gump Almost everyone who knows me knows that I truly love this movie. I have watched it over 400 times (427 by last count, give or take two or three). When I was in elementary school I had this VHS in my VCR and played it every single day for over a year. I kinda think the main reason was because it was actually stuck in the VCR and I wanted to play in my room and not in the living room. This movie though has become another symbol for me and my baby though, we both love this movie!
5. Hook Another movie that I’ve probably watch hundreds of times before. I honestly think it was one of my first VHSs (and my first ever DVD). I remember watching it over and over again as a kid. Always loving the movie and especially Robin Williams (one of my favorite actors of all time next to Bill Murray and Jim Carrey). It’s also a movie that my cousin constantly goes on about because I made her watch it sooo much when I was little.
6. Lethal Weapon (all 4) This is one series of movies that I have watched my whole life. Many many times me and my mom have sat together during a long saturday or sunday and watched the whole series of movies. This will always remain on my list of favorite movies.
7. Home Alone (1&2) These are my all time favorite Christmas movies! I always watch these at least three times over the holidays starting from Thanksgiving all the way to Christmas. It has been a tradition as far back as I can remember.lol
8. Lords of Dogtown Wow. This movie sums up for me the best summer of my life (2007). I just remember having an awesome job at our local movie theater being able to watch tons and tons of movies for free! (the job was overall very very crappy though Haha). Every time I watch this movie I think about that summer.
9. Real Genius I Love this movie! I remember watching this over and over again before I went off to college. I felt like it was kind of prepping me for college or at least putting my mind at ease a little. Love the soundtrack as well!
10. Jurassic Park Talk about a movie that I made my family watch a lot! Haha I have always loved Jurassic Park(and dinosaurs as a whole). I got a chance to see Jurassic Park in 3D when they re-released it. One great memory I have though is going to see the third movie with my aunt in theaters.
11. Mrs. Doubtfire GREAT MOVIE!!! This movie definitely makes me think about the 90s. Once again another movie with Robin Williams! No matter how old I am it always has me cracking up!
12. What About Bob Probably one of the most underrated movie of all time. This is the movie that introduced me to the great Bill Murray! I hope that one day they make this movie on Bluray to add it to my collection. Its been a while since I’ve had a chance to watch this movie.
I could go on and on and most of you probably could tell that all of these movies are from my childhood.
AIGA Wonder Years: Designers Reach Back Opening Reception
Hey everyone, I’m really excited to be apart of the Wonder Years Gallery Show in Atlanta this week. If you wanna come out and enjoy the work of a great group of creative individuals please come to the WonderRoot Gallery in Atlanta on Friday March 8, between 8pm - 10pm.
Next week I will have one of my illustrations showcased in the WonderRoot gallery in Atlanta, GA. Can’t wait for the reception on March 8th but I admit its going to be murder having to drive all the way up to Atlanta to drop off the piece and on Friday for the reception.
Connections: Getting Them, Cultivating Them, Keeping Them & Using Them
Ever email a designer, a studio, or even an artist you look up to? I have spent countless hours emailing designers, creative directors, illustrators, artists, etc. just to gain some insight on what I need to focus more on when it comes to my work. Ultimately you will hear from only about 25-50%. Even if they say something like good like “Great style” or “Amazing use of color” or even something bad like “Looks like college work” or “Things need to thought out more” All of that is the best advice you can get. Some people will just send out small two line emails. Others will send you huge Essays detailing your strengths and weakness through their eyes and even sometimes their boss’s.
But what am I getting at here? Why did I even ask if you have contacted people like this? There is just a on
e word answer “connections”. Every single one of those people who respond back to you are now potential connections for you in the future. After 6 months to a year goes by send them another email (after of course the usual reply “Thank you so much for your advice!”). Show them your growth explain to them that their criticism really helped you grow to where you are at now. If you continue to develop your connection then when you get close to graduation they may help you find a job or even freelancing possabilities.
In this day and age, you need connections! And Do not make the same mistake I made the first couple of times that I sent out emails to my favorite studios and designers with a completely static pre-made message asking for help. You have to engage them and talk to them, tell them why you are asking them for advice, flatter them, put them on a platinum pedistal holding a basket of diamonds. Use the most powerful tool in your arsenal as a designer…words. It ALL comes down to when the designer reads his/her email and reads yours. Is he going to just “junk it” or is he going to click on your link or attachment. Is he going to give you the time that could be spent looking up new youtube celebs. You have to use your words!