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To be always learning new things.

1. The Sky's There for the Dreamers

One of the most incredible things about design is the infinite amount of ways a creative mind can choose to represent a concept or idea. It's being able to share a new way of thinking through visual means.

Often, in our line of work, there is a tendency and a want to draw inspiration from design trends around us. As the system pushes and pulls, new movements become popularized, and eventually over-popularized.

We can't subject ourselves to a trend on the sole basis of "this seems to work for everyone else." We risk becoming outdated. A successful brand builds its image on the principle of the avant-garde, the cutting-edge: the crazy, far-out-there ideas that demand attention. In Nietzche's words, "the surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike, than those who think differently."

2. Quirkiness is Human

A design is the envelope to a message. Therefore, the most successful way to design, is to connect. It's how we encourage our viewer to understand what we have to say. No one sees the world in monochrome. Don't be afraid to play with colors, diagonals, curves, cloonkiness, and funky, made-up words.

"Stare. It is the way to educate your eye, and more. Stare, pry, listen, eavesdrop. Die knowing something." - Walker Evans.

3. Fit and Finish is the Attention-Grabber

Each industry has a niche, each client a target audience, each project a context. A designer accessories gallery might want to appeal to a "snappier," sleeker, at times more fashion-savvy clientele. We must be receptive to each of the minute, but indispensable, intricacies of a project and its stakeholders. Fit and finish, and a laser-sharp attention to detail will ensure that every product we make is uniquely its own.

4. Be your Toughest Critic

We must put so much fervor and passion into every project, that we'd be willing to defend it under any circumstances. If we aren't proud of our work, we haven't put our best into it. To stand tall among the rest, we have to be our own toughest critic, and set our highest expectations. We have to maintain a continuous workflow, and learn every step of the way. Winners aren't born, they're made.

"Being realistic is the most common path to mediocrity" - Will Smith.