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I'm a web designer and I find myself a bit stuck because of lack of creativity. Do you have any advice, maybe some books or whatever to find some creativity again?

Thank you.

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One thing i have found hugely helpful is looking for and keeping images of precedents, new ones for every job. They don't need to be from the same industry or field; in fact if they aren't, all the better because it will help you avoid the trap of simply copying and will force you to pull out the concept in a critical thought process. For example, i often enjoy looking at advertising for inspiration for landscape/architectual designs, even if its just the colour palette, simple form, or the arrangement of devices.

As for sources, they are everywhere:

  • on the web, i prefer flickr or deviant type sites as opposed to google since there is a better high-quality:crud work ratio.
  • I also keep books and magazines for flicking through later, i especially value books of past advertising campaigns - they don't even need to be very recent.
  • take photos of the world, and be aware of your environment. Even just going for a walk can be an incrediably inspiring experience.

And then draw. Sketch all the time - even if your not very good. Designers are primarily visual thinkers and we need to let that flow out. I even find myself just scribbling without purpose just to get started. Sometimes its just starting something is the toughest block to get past.

Remember: 'Creativity' never just a brain-flash moment of brilliance, and sometimes you won't even get one of those at all. A design always needs to be worked out bit by bit; refining, critiquing, adding and subtracting, to get the fullest solution

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Yes, I have books to recommend; nothing better than to leaf through books for 1. taking the mind and eyes off the screen. 2. sitting in the park, well away from work. This list is probably rather eclectic, but that might just be the ticket, as it will throw up surprises.

Alan Fletcher: the art of looking sideways

Fiell: designing the 21st century

Edward Tufte: Visual explanations, The display of quantitative information, Envisioning information, Beautiful evidence

Leonardo da Vinci

Alan Male: Illustration: A Theoretical and Contextual Perspective

Rosenberg and Grafton: cartographies of time

Lupton: thinking with type

Bringhurst: The elements of typography

Blackstock collection

Findlay: colour: a history of the palette

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