I was being phone-interviewed the other day by a woman who is in the start-up phase of a new clothing design business. This one actually sounded like they were funded and may really have a budget for creative work. Anyway, one of her questions to me was, "Where do you get your inspiration for your work?" That was a really good question and kind of caught me off guard for a moment.
You know, the standard questions I usually get are, "How much is it going to cost?" or "What do you charge?" I don't usually get design sources questions from a start-up client. The question sort of took me back to formal job interviews or design instructor-student discussions.
So, I cleared-out the cobwebs and gathered my thoughts and told her what I do. I mentioned the plethora of design publications and annuals that I read and peruse as well as my huge bag of good and not-so-good design samples I have saved through the years which serve as inspiration and reminders of what I'd like to do - and not do - in a design solution. I also mentioned the many design lectures and continuing education classes I take in order to hear what's going on out there and stay sort of current.
It all sounded sort of canned and calculated as I was telling her these things, but they're all true. I DO have a lot of sources of inspiration and I do use them. Don't get me wrong, there are times when I simply power-drive to my own solution without regard to colleague or client feedback when I am feeling RIGHT, dammit! Those times come back to bite me somehow, anyway, but I digress. My point is that since I strive to achieve the best solution for a problem or challenge, I look toward resources which can help me and give me some guidance. I don't need to do this design thing alone.
Who knows what she thought about my response to her question. She may not have thought a thing. I don't know yet. I just told her what I do. I didn't even get a chance to tell her about the ever-increasing library of design books that are crowding my home and studio. I don't think she needed to know how much of a geek I really am.