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Finding Creative Inspiration

As designers, we all have our own ways and methods of finding creative inspiration. For some it can be quite easy and straightforward. For others, it can be a drawn out process, a search or a series of knock on instances that eventually leat to “being inspired”.

What is Inspiration?

Inspiration derives from the Latin word inspiratus, meaning to ‘breath in to’. A breath of fresh air. A new sense of perspective or being. A flip of the switch. The feeling of leasing new life into oneself.

As designers, we are constantly expected to be creative and come up with new designs daily. Finding creative inspiration can actually be a task in itself. We can get stagnate, unmotivated or even lazy.

I personally feel inspiration can only be acted upon with motivation as the catalyst. I need to be inspired first and the motivated to act one that inspiration. Otherwise, the inspiration will be lost.

I’m not a huge fan of going online for inspiration. Checking out new creative portals and design related sites is great, but I find one can slip down the internet rabbit hole very fast and before you know it you’re 7 levels deep in Youtube! For me what works consists of:

Design Books

Like when starting a new brand, design books are the first port of call for inspiration for me. My favourite time period for graphic design would be from 80’s to early 00’s. One book I always dip back into quite often is How to be a Graphic Designer without Losing Your Soul by Adrian Shaughnessy.

Finding Creative Inspiration through reading resource materials


I’ve always had a fondness for architecture, minimalist architecture in particular. Architects like Le Corbusier for example. I feel that architecture, given that it’s a totally different discipline, shares some common traits with design.

Finding Creative Inspiration - Architecture

Traditional Art

There’s something great about viewing the traditional works of art. Even better still, to go and visit an exhibition where possible, albeit, these days they are few and far between.

Finding Creative Inspiration through visiting art galleries

Walking in Nature

Taking a long walk in nature or even a quick detour out of the office into the nearest green area can do wonders to spark creativity. Getting away from the desk as much as possible in general can be a huge help.

Finding Creative Inspiration - Nature Walking


I love running. Very similar to walking in nature, A lot of ideas I get are generated mid run.

Finding Creative Inspiration - Running

The above are sources that work for me, which may differ greatly creative to creative. What works for you personally?