Dare to be Different



“If you desire to make a difference in the world, you must be different from the world.” — Elaine S. Dalton

If you want to change things, you need to rattle some cages, shake things up, and go for the bold.

You have to find the edge.

And, then push past it.

The way to change the world, or at least your world, is to dare to be different.  When you dare to be different, you step out of the mold, and you make space for your creative twists.  When you dare to be different, sometimes you stand alone.  But alone is where your unique creative contribution can thrive.

It’s what leaders, great artists, and inspiring minds, do.  They take us beyond the edges of conformity to pave brave new frontiers.

In the book, Creative Anarchy: How To Break the Rules of Graphic Design for Creative Success, Denise Bosler encourages us to dare to be different and to boldly go where no one has gone before.

Ask Yourself Why Everyone is Doing It

Always question WHY.  Just because everybody else is doing it, doesn’t mean it’s a good idea or even that it’s working.

Bosler writes:

“Breaking the rules is not for the meek designer or timid client.  It takes guts to go against the industry norms.  Fear breeds an attitude of, ‘Everybody else is doing it so I should probably do it, too.’
But ask yourself: Is there a valid reason why everyone is doing it, or is everyone doing it just because everyone else is doing it?  The creative anarchist always questions why.”

Beware the Lemming-Like Attitude

One way to kill your creativity is to do the same as what everybody else is doing.

Bosler writes:

“Perfume advertising is a great example of this lemming-like attitude.  A sullen, handsome, chisel-faced male looks longingly into the distance.  A stunning girl comes to him.  They embrace, almost kiss, and exchange smoldering looks like posing as beautifully as possible.  That’s it for 90 percent of perfume advertising.  Creativity? Innovative concept? “

Take Risks

When everybody else is doing the same thing, sometimes the best thing you can do, is something totally different.

Bosler writes:

“Too many industries do the same thing over and over again.  But once in a blue moon, an advertiser dares to be different.  Dari Marder, chief marketing office or Iconix Group, Inc, turned the advertising world on its head when she suggested that the 1997 Candie’s shoe advertising campaign feature Jenny McCarthy sitting on a toilet.  With underwear around her ankles and Candie’s shoes on her feet, McCarthy, and Mader, created a provocative, controversial, and highly-successful ad campaign.  The target audience girls loved it–the moms, not so much.  Shoe advertising was never the same again.”

Provocative, Unexpected, and Spectacular

Stir hearts and minds with your creative twist.  The bold can be beautiful.

Bosler writes:

“’Provocative’ is music to the ears of the creative anarchist.  Other great words and phrases include: unexpected, infectious, viral, unusual, shocking, spectacular, double-take, visual surprise, ‘I want to hang it on my wall,’ and ‘I want to show everyone.’  In fact, try to make hearing those words your goal when pushing design boundaries.”

Sometimes the best way to find the edge that people are looking for, is to look beyond your own boundaries.

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Image by Tim Kossow.