Lessons in creativity – quotes and insights about creativity from leaders and artists


Creativity is key. That is the mantra that many creative leaders should revolve their lives around. When you have a sense of creativity about your business, campaigns and products, you send a strong message to your stakeholders that you’re dedicated to your customers. Most brands that get stagnated in the long run is primarily because younger startups are just that much more creative and control the market share through their customer-friendly product line. Now, don't be harrowed at the prospect of breaking away from the mould of creative stagnation, there is always a way out and who better to guide you but some of the most creative leaders in the world.

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Paula Scher (CEO, Pentagram)

Paula is one of the most the most prolific designers of our times. She’s primarily a brand designer who’s worked with some of the biggest brands, such as Microsoft, Citibank, Barclays, to name a few. She has also inspired multiple fonts, design and typeface movements that have sent waves across the design world. For Paula, creativity is all about solving a problem with beauty.

When working on Citibank’s $1.5M logo, it took her 5 minutes to develop it on a napkin. Here’s what she had to say “It took me a few seconds to draw it, but it took me 34 years to learn how to draw it in a few seconds.” That’s the essence of Paula’s approach – trust your gut instincts and make it beautiful.


For one of the most sought-after photographers in the world, Platon's mantra towards creative is very rudimentary - engage the subject. For the world-class photographer - who has clicked the likes of Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin to Ozzy Osbourne and Edward Snowden - establishing a rapport with the individual is of the essence. His creative process involves spending time with his subjects and asking them personal and insightful questions about their life, journey, and the frame appears to him when the moment is right. With some it can be 10 minutes, with others a few hours, but with every question and interaction he wants to dig deeper and capture something that no other photographer has.

Tinker Hatfield

The name Tinker is synonymous with sneaker and shoe aficionados across the world. The legendary shoemaker has undoubtedly been the backbone of Nike and helped the footwear giant enter the pantheons of the top business empires world over.

As with any creative leader, Tinker also had his trial with fire. With so much at stake - involving dipping sales and losing out on basketball legend Michael Jordan's sponsorship, Tinker had many odds stacked against him. There was only way out, bedazzle and disrupt the market. And impress he did. Not only did the shoemaker dazzle and impress Jordan to stay put with Nike and he also resuscitated the company's flagship Air Jordan line of shoes.

Instead of designing a shoe prototype and Tinker created a vision board and an entire line of Jordan brand apparel. The range of apparel included everything from sneakers to jerseys, to jackets and hats. Tinker wanted to talk about the bigger picture and not just be another shoe designer. He captured Michael’s journey, and all his struggles into key concepts and designs. The moment Jordan saw the designs, he accepted. Now, the Jordan brand is worth billions of dollars all thanks to that one meeting, where Tinker made it work.

Bjarke Ingels

Bjarke is one of the most innovative interior designers in the world, who has displayed art installations and fixtures in some of the grandest galleries. He’s been winning awards since 2011 for his work in architecture, and critics described him as combining shrewd analysis, playful experimentation, social responsibility and satire. He’s one of the few architects that combined surreal architecture into everyday life and he has been inspirational to some of the top fashion designers as well. He believes that, creativity is a responsibility that everyone has to take upon themselves in order to solve some of the greatest challenges in the world. He’s a mad genius mixed with a playful creative attitude.

Read Also: Hacking creativity in business


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