For the past few months, I have been participating as a mentee in the AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Arts) Mentor/Mentee program with the Philadelphia chapter. We received a fun design project to create postcards featuring an inspirational design quote while using the AIGA color palette. Inspirational quotes at first blush can seem cheezy (the 'z' indicates extra cheese). The cheeze factor is not necessarily linked to the message itself, but with the overabundance of inspiring quotes, books of quotes, quote posters with lighthouses, quote posters with cats, and 5 out of 10 posts on any social media account with life-affirming quotes. One or two powerful messages read quietly to oneself is O.K. But put 10 quotes back to back in a hand-written font over a low-opacity photo of a woman diving off a seaside cliff at sunset, and we start to feel the cheeze.
That being said, we all need a little inspiration everyday. I chose the Wayne Dyer quote above, because whenever I feel fatigued or in a slump throughout the day, I find myself saying in my head the first two lines:
"Be miserable. Or motivate yourself."
That's usually enough to get me moving if even at a turtle's pace. Because when I stop creating, or drawing or chipping away at my to-do list for too long, I'm not happy. These lines are so simple and yet powerful because they succinctly ask your brain, do you want to be miserable or happy? And if the answer is happy (I'm betting it is), then you have to do what you need to do to get to the fulfilling work of your day. It doesn't have to be your job. It could be a goal or a hobby or simply something that you love to do that compels you to leave your bed.
I created the hash pattern and the weird stitching and hook shapes in pencil and then scanned them and turned them into vectors (editable, scaleable objects in the magic computer box). The font is Rift from Fort Foundry.