Feeling Inspired?

Great work comes from being inspired. While grand moments of inspiration come and go, the most productive and creative thinkers and doers get inspiration from a variety of sources, avenues, and outlets. We asked a sampling of our Smashing team what inspires them on a daily basis to create and develop their best work.

Jessica Barnes, Creative Director. | My expertise and focus are building fun and meaningful experiences for kids, so I let them inspire me. Kids, and the universe they inhabit, both inspire me and guide my approach to my work. I also love pop culture, technology, and gadgets, and get inspiration from research and, of course, playing games.

Heath Lombard, QA Manager. | My family, friends, and peers inspire me to do my best at what I do. I am so proud of all of them that it makes me want to work on their level each day, and provide them with something great.

Anna Ho, Associate Strategist. | Good questions inspire me on a daily basis. They drive my professional pursuit of usable knowledge. Whether it’s a question I stumble upon myself or an intriguing question that’s lobbed at me, there’s nothing like a good puzzle to keep me happy and busy.

Chris Hannon, Associate Design Director. | For me getting regularly inspired revolves around media consumption; this encourages fresh input from other people’s work and analysis of my own. To keep it interesting I try to do this around things that aren’t necessarily design related. For example, enter the word “upcycle” into Pinterest and when you see how people are using things, it really inspires you to look at problems and solutions differently.  I picked this idea of from the late (and great) Tibor Kalman, whose work I find to be tremendously inspiring.

Amber Manuguid | Designer. I love fixing problems and finding new ways of looking at the ordinary. To me, our everyday routines are opportunities for creativity. Oftentimes we do what we do because that’s all we know, or because that’s what we think we’re supposed to do. Life is what we make of it — why not get creative and make it better?

Sean Sehr | Developer. What inspires me is the knowledge that my peers and clients rely on my work on a daily basis. If the work that I do fails it has a direct impact on that of my peers and clients.

Telford Burtts | Senior Producer. What inspires me to do my best work on a daily basis is? That’s a great question.

  1. Time inspires me to do my best work.
  2. Knowing that today is what I have, I approach every day like it could be the last. While I have hope that tomorrow comes, I can’t worry about it too much.
  3. I remind myself to focus my mind and energy on the right things…to be efficient, have fun, motivate my peers to do their best work by taking a moment to think.
  4. Being blessed that I’m able to enjoy another day with the people I care about.

This approach gives me the allowance to be myself, while doing something I love…working with people and having fun with what I’m doing in the moment leads to the creation of really cool things.


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