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Weekly Inspirations: Oct 19, 2018

Here are the things that I think are worth reading and checking out this week:


Art icon Shepard Fairey is responsible for many people’s obsession with the medium, specifically when it comes to his renowned OBEY Giant brand. Now, the man who created one of the most recognized logos in contemporary art is now bringing it to the tech community, creating a new app that offers both a Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality experience to show off his latest exhibition. We got a chance to speak with the legendary creative last night (rapping all the words to Slick Rick’s “Children’s Story” just seconds before our talk, might we add!) at the launch party for his “DAMAGED” app — officially operating as a pop-up experience on 136 Bowery in NYC beginning today (Oct 17) until Sunday (Oct. 21) — where he spoke in detail on how everything came together to bring it all to life. Read it in his words below, and see more photos from last night’s event in partnership with VRt Ventures, ABSTRKT NYC and Juxtapoz Magazine that featured a killer DJ set by Stretch Armstrong, libations courtesy of 1800 Tequila, good eats from the good folks at Sweet Chick and a room full of Downtown tastemakers that were all there for the love of Shep.
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Never Punish Loyal Employees for being Honest

My new boss told me to never be afraid to give feedback. The next Monday morning in a meeting, I happily shared my viewpoint on a new policy. Thereafter, I noticed my boss’s disposition towards me changed. He stopped talking to me. I was shunned. I even felt the effects of this in my monthly performance appraisal, where he noted, I was not supportive of the organization, and I needed to be a better team player. The picture was quite clear – truthful feedback was not appreciated. Heather, a co-worker approached me and said, “You are new, honest feedback is just lip service, don’t fall for it.” I quickly learned loyalists and sycophants were appreciated, while realists were punished. They built a culture of “yes employees.” I knew I had so much to offer, yet I couldn’t. Six months later, my boss was fired. He made a mistake on a proposal that cost the company its biggest client. This could have been easily avoided if he had just asked for honest input.
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The most important design tool you’re not using

About five years ago, I started looking for a new timer to use in my design workshops for business executives. I’d used a watch up until then and communicated time to participants like, “we’ll stop at 2:35,” or “five minutes starting now . . . one minute . . . okay we’re almost done, so wrap up your current concepts . . . okay, let’s wrap up . . . okay, let’s quiet down and share.” Repeatedly asking enthusiastic CEOs to put down their Sharpies just wasn’t cutting it. I wanted everyone to be on the same page about how much time remained on a given exercise–something with a definitive end and something that would spatiallydisplay time to concretely communicate an otherwise squishy concept. Then I came across the device that would quickly become my most valued design tool: the Time Timer. It was love at first sight. In a life surrounded by feature-packed, overly designed gizmos begging for my attention every moment of every day, the Time Timer was the most earnestly designed object I’d ever seen. It’s one of those objects that is so simple, it’s easy to think that it wasn’t even designed at all, that it just exists because that’s what it was meant to be. It’s even called the Time Timer! It didn’t have some cute monosyllabic meaningless name. It is exactly what it is, a time timer, and it is perfect.
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ILM’s Rob Bredow on ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ and the Future of VFX

Even before he was promoted to SVP, executive director and head of ILM in May, Rob Bredow was a very busy man. He joined Industrial Light & Magic in 2014 as a visual effects supervisor, then quickly rose up the ranks, helping to launch ILMxLAB in 2015 to develop and release immersive entertainment, moving into the chief technology officer role at Lucasfilm in 2016 and most recently serving as visual effects supervisor and co-producer of Disney’s “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” working alongside director Ron Howard. He’s been making the rounds of top-notch tech conferences like SIGGRAPH in August and the upcoming View Conference in Turin, Italy, talking about creativity and how it applies to just about everything we do. “Whether that’s writing code, or creating a detail in a shot, those are all things that I feel are really creatively driven,” he says.
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Netflix Culture

Entertainment, like friendship, is a fundamental human need; it changes how we feel and gives us common ground. Netflix is better entertainment at lower cost and greater scale than the world has ever seen. We want to entertain everyone, and make the world smile. This document is about our unusual employee culture. Like all great companies, we strive to hire the best and we value integrity, excellence, respect, inclusivity, and collaboration.
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Life Advice: Don’t Find Your Passion

As a college professor, I have the privilege of advising young women and men as they make decisions about course selections, major areas of study, and life directions. Like other college students around the country, many of my advisees are searching for content they find interesting and meaningful, for work that is fulfilling and purposeful. Many are eager to “find their passion.” On the surface, these goals seem laudable. Instead of seeking power, status or personal wealth, some students are motivated to discover their interests and uncover the path that excites and drives them. They want a career that lights their fire. Presumably they are adhering to the adage, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.”
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