Thursday, August 10, 2006

Letter to a young designer

Taken from

1. Never read design magazines; they will only distract you.

2. And depress you.

3. Instead, remember to visit a toy shop once a week in order to experience the magic that design can achieve.

4. Treat your local high street as though it were the Museum of Modern Art.

5. Treat the Museum of Modern Art as though it were your local high street.

6. Keep a record of the shape of each piece of food you eat.

7. Is there a pattern to your food shapes? And what might that pattern mean?

8. Every day, use something in the wrong way. (But wear goggles, because it might become dangerous.)

9. Write a biography of an imaginary designer in biro. Ideally, one who ended up buried in a pauper’s grave.

10. Then illustrate it.

11. Try to imagine how you would extend your local currency to include all kinds of nonmonetary exchange. Remember to prototype these designs thoroughly.

12. Phone all your clients and tell them you’re doubling your fee.

13. Only make models out of Plasticine. It’s not very reliable, and keeps changing shape, but it will add to your personal mythology.

14. Only use Penguin Classics as sketchbooks. That way, you’ll never suffer from blank-page-itis (and, as a bonus, it works out cheaper).

15. Remember: Measure twice, cut once, but sometimes, just hack away.

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