Working with creatives, being a creative and teaching creatives is fascinating.

The power of creativity is pretty cool – something out of nothing,  something out of random, something out of something else.

Talking particularly with student designers they are often focused on creating, designing and making something they love.

Brilliant.  It is a fun and liberating experience.

For most creatives, it is easy to design something to resonate with you.  You and people like you will like it and admire it and want it and buy it.


For some creatives, taking your art to the level means not designing something for yourself or people like you, but picking an audience and creating something they love, something with meaning and connection for them.

It means knowing an audience and a target market intimately and solving one of their problems, a problem you don’t have or don’t value a fix for.

Creativity is intelligence having fun.

– Albert Einstein

If you are a fashion graduate, don’t design something for yourself – choose an audience you have never been a part of (women returning to the workforce for example) and create outfit solutions for them and their mindspace and needs.

If you are an industrial designer who has a personal preference for minimal collections, design an item that solves the storage problems of a collector.

If you are a graphic designer who has never been to a family entertainment event, design a promotional piece to mobilise young families to come to an event.

Choosing an audience (not yourself) gives you a framework.


It means a lot of what you might personally gravitate to is not on the table.

It means things you never considered are now primary considerations.

It means a detailed framework of values, needs and desired outcomes.

Once you understand the framework, you have total freedom to create the piece to solve the problem.

Creativity gives you courage.

– Henri Matisse

You don’t need to second guess yourself or your audience’s needs – the freedom to create the right solution makes the right solution easier.

If you are a creative, don’t be scared to build something for a specific audience.

You aren’t selling out, lowering your art or yourself and you aren’t a lesser creative.

You are the most powerful person in the world because your creativity can solve someone else’s problem.

So go do that.