As a designer/artist, the idea generation stage of a concept can be the most exciting & invigorating experience. However, it can also be the most time-consuming, frustrating and challenging process. So how does one actually come up with ideas? There is no right or wrong method, as each creative mind works best in their individual ways.
Ideas can come from inspirations. From specific cultures to music, dance to real life experiences. It could even be from an existing piece of work, or influenced by the young generations ideas. With so many influences, it can be hard to narrow down. Using the right tools can help with this process, check out our recommendations below:
Having a good old-fashioned notepad around can be very useful to designers. I personally use a plain Moleskin A5 notepad, which is small & portable, but not too small that you’d run out of space quickly. Some may prefer the newer digital methods of inputting their ideas, whether it be their mobile device, or tablet. Having something to capture your ideas on the go can help your creativity. Whether it is a brainstorm of ideas, or doodled images, have something to track your ideas.
On the digital side, Adobe programs have long benefited a variety of creative minds. If you are a designer, Illustrator & Photoshop are essential tools. For Photographers, Lightroom & Photoshop are great for post editing. For film-makers & videographers Premier Pro and After Effects can help bring out the cinematic feel of your project. Whatever the creative project may be, Adobe has a wide range of tools available. The downside is there’s a cost & it isn’t cheap. They do however offer a trial & we highly recommends investing in the products from Adobe when you have the chance!
Social Networks. Being a creative can be hard at times. Therefore building the right connections on several networks is very essential. Why? Because a larger network will widen your opportunities, opening you up to the creative industry. Connect with fellow designers and creative. Doing so can also motivate you and inspire you to become better than your colleagues. However, be careful to treat each social network as their own separate entity, each have their own uses and specific purposes (e.g Facebook vs. LinkedIn)
Some may agree, some may disagree with this one, but I like to have my music with me when creating as it helps with the whole process. Again this is not for everyone, but if you know music helps you create, then it is essential.
A clean work desk. A cluttered desk may disrupt creativity, (it may help others find ideas), but from my perspective, have a clean work area helps with a Zen-like atmosphere, which in turn helps with focus & innovation. Following on from this, you could also have your own meditative spot. It could be at the park or by the river, on the rooftops or even in your car. Having your own spot to clear thoughts to focus on creating is something people usually brush aside. Find one… it helps a lot.
There are several more tools that are useful for a creative, from apps to stationary. But keep in mind that the most useful tool you have at your disposal is your own mind.