His notes about it say that "It’s a simple list of 10 things I wish I’d heard when I was in college."
One of my favorite parts of the 'list' is when he states:
There’s an economic theory out there that if you take the incomes of your five closest friends and average them, the resulting number will be pretty close to your own income.
I think the same thing is true of our idea incomes. You’re only going to be as good as the stuff you surround yourself with.In other words, we have to constantly be looking at and exploring others' ideas, we can't live in a little design bubble as it sometimes seems that we do in school.
Your job is to collect ideas. The best way to collect ideas is to read. Read, read, read, read, read. Read the newspaper. Read the weather. Read the signs on the road. Read the faces of strangers. The more you read, the more you can choose to be influenced by.
This advice was also given to me by a screenwriting professor that I had while at DePaul. He used to ask us, "how are you going to write an interesting story unless you go and do interesting things?"
I think this advice is particularly important to us now that we are all seniors/soon to be seniors/almost graduating and moving out of school-mode.
Everything I said above is just ONE part of his list - 1) How to Steal Like an Artist.
It also includes:
2) Don't wait until you know who you are to make things.
3) Write the book you want to read.
4) Use your hands.
5) Side projects and hobbies are important (we also heard this in class!)
6) Do good work, then put it where people can see it.
7) Geography is no longer our master.
8) Be nice (the world is a small town).
9) Be boring (it's the only way to get work done).
Although this wasn't a piece of design that I found interesting, it is something that I felt should be shared with the class. Austin Kleon has a lot of interesting ideas, and if nothing else his Newspaper Blackout poems are also enlightening (and quick reads usually) if you're looking for something to think about in a new way.
The whole thing can be found here: