1. Take a quarterly vacation
2. Hold a “retrospective” after projects
3. Write every day
4. Create an “interesting people fund”
5. Keep “tear sheets” to get inspired
6. Nap every day
7. Envision what you will be remembered for
8. Brainstorm at the bar
9. Get out of the building
10. Engage in “morphological synthesis”
99U culls 10 creative habits you should steal from worthy models like Cheryl Strayed, James Victore, and Ze Frank – details on each at the link.
Let me be blunt: Stock photography needs to die. In his 1946 essay “Politics and the English Language,” George Orwell argued that clichéd language produces clichéd thinking. Using a stale image, as he’d put it, “makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.” Stock photography imprisons us in the same cognitive jail. Its intentionally bland images are designed to be usable in many vaguely defined situations. This produces wretched photography for the same reason Hallmark cards produce wretched poetry. We live in a visual world, communicating and thinking in pictures. When we use stock photos, we think in clichés.
The true cure for stock photography is inside your camera phone.
Thompson is the author of the excellent Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better.
Creative people are confident in only one thing: their own doubt. I think there’s a huge lack of self-confidence in a creative person because, by nature, the definition of a creative person is someone who is trying to make something new. They know, if they are professional creatives, that the likelihood of doing that—making something new and significant—is hugely unlikely, so they build within that city of doubt. From doubt, they get to iterate and work extremely hard, hoping to find something new; it’s all about hope. I’ve never met anyone who is good at what they do creatively and is super-confident. Maybe they pretend to be confident in front of their agent or the media, but I’ve never been confident in that way.