Editorial: Where do you get your inspiration?

Editorial: Where do you get your inspiration?

Three years ago I saw Alan Kitching lecture about his life as a typographer and one of the things that has always stuck with me was the amount of cut-outs he had collected over the years. He had a special place to keep hundreds of letters he would lovingly cut out of a newspaper or a magazine in the hope that it would inspire him in a later project. We all do it, probably without even really thinking about it. We appreciate the work of others, we collect it, stick it on a wall or stick it in a scrapbook in the hope that it would one day inspire us and more importantly pay the bills. This is one of the things I have always admired in designers, the scope of appreciation of each other’s work, even if it’s driven by a selfish desire to better our own body of work.

When I was studying, my uni box room became my studio, my walls covered with print I’d collected because I liked the type or how the colour sat on the page, my drawers full of different papers and print finishes, folders full of glossy cut-outs and shelves laden with hundreds of pounds worth of design publications. Any way we can store type and imagery, we do.

The only problem was that my collection was quickly becoming something that was being ‘spoon-fed’ down to me from various magazine editors. My sources had become limited, drained and repetitive and no doubt my own poster covered little world of inspiration was replicated up and down the country by anyone with a few ‘mainstream’ magazine subscriptions. There was increasingly nothing unique on my walls or in the world from which I drew my inspiration.

The online world and how we respond to print or photography on screen has become much more than just another way to satisfy our desire to admire, collect and inspire ourselves. What it offers is the freedom to be inspired by creatives who were not getting into the pages of the big names. Giving us the freedom to decide for ourselves what works and what doesn’t and what pushes us to create in ways we never considered before. In an ever-increasing world of experimental design and composition more and more becomes accessible to us everyday. What that presents to us is the freedom to decide for ourselves who inspires us and who we will lovingly add to our precious Safari-bookmark collection.

Looking for a bit of inspiration? Why not check out some of the work our Collective members have been uploading to their profiles recently here.

  • Image source: indiedays.com