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Most Popular Articles

Here are the 25 most popular articles that have been published on my blog over the past 12 years.

These articles talk about the challenges of being a designer and creative director, trying to become a better leader, fostering the creative process and my insights on digital innovation. This site has been recognized with a Webby Award Honoree for Best Personal Website, named a Top 10 blogs for designers by HOW Magazine and one of the Top 100 Design Blogs to Follow. My articles have been featured on, CREATE magazine, Behance and LinkedIn’s Design, Social Media, Recruiting & Hiring and Big Ideas & Innovation channels.


1.) Are you a creative leader or manager?

What characteristics makes a great leader?
Read the article here


2.) Presenting Creative 101

Learn the basics of how to be a great presenter
Part 1  |  Part 2  |  Part 3


3.) The Inverse Facebook Experiment

Understanding the depth of a 'like'
Read the article here


4.) Practice safe design. Always use a strategy.

8 questions you have to ask and answer on every project
Read the article here


5.) Success is a choice (And everything else I've learned so far)

How to have a great creative career
Read the article here


6.) I’ve used the iPad Pro with an Apple Pencil and its amazing

Hands on with the iPad Pro
Read the article here



7.) Why is client-side creativity too often a self-defeating process?

What's wrong in corporate creativity?
Read the article here


8.) Jiro dreams of Sushi. You need to dream of design.

The power of eternal dissatisfaction
Read the article here


9.) Creativity is a blue collar profession

The truth behind ideas
Read the article here


10.) What Britney Spears can teach you about modern experiential branding?

Britney is the secret to social media
Read the article here


11.) Not Everyone Loves A Leader

The tough part of leadership
Read the article here



 12.) My design and leadership beliefs

My principles to rule them all
Read the article here


13.) Best New Digital Design Tools You’ve Never Heard Of

Best emerging design tools
Read the article here


14.) The interview process: A Creative Directors perspective

5 tips on how to get the job
Read the article here


15.) How to write a resume that will get you noticed

Stand out from the crowd
Read the article here


16.) Creative is all about R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Aretha had it right for us too
Read the article here


17.) Develop short term memory loss

Understand what you are designing
Read the article here


18.) 5 Ways To Build Rapport With Your Clients

How to connect with anyone
Read the article here



19.) A Creative Director’s 5 biggest portfolio warning signs

Portfolio as crystal ball
Read the article here

20.) Why ‘Move Fast and Break Stuff’ became ‘Slow Down and Fix Your Shit’

Making agile work
Read the article here


21.) Why good ideas will turn your clients into tiny drug addicts

Why good ideas are a drug
Read the article here


22.) Why did Google Glass go SO wrong?!?

The unspoken truth
Read the article here


23.) 10 Best Sketch Plug-ins

My favorite Sketch plug-ins.
Read the article here

24.) The Ego is Blogging

The article that started it all
Read the article here


25.) Wearable App Design Basics

Not a smaller iPhone app
Read the article here

Creative Director, Designer, Brand Builder, Speaker, Podcaster, Crazy One. As a designer, I have 20+ years experience creating the strategy, concepts, and designs for award-winning integrated global advertising campaigns, building multiple global Fortune 500 brands and creating innovative digital experiences. As a leader, I have 15+ years transforming agency and client-side teams using a mix of creativity, business strategy, process and political skill to create innovative, world-class work and cultures that change industries and companies. My clients have included American Airlines, W Hotels, Disney, Citi, ExxonMobil, Acura, Old Navy, Nationwide Insurance, Verizon, Subaru and many others. My work has received over 150 international awards, my app designs have been named as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Apps, Apple has featured my work in 9 keynotes, 4 TV commercials and more.

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 HUGE thank you to master illustrator and vector art monster @rob_zilla_iii for this amazing drawing all done on his iPad Pro. Go follow him because he usually draws way cooler people than me. #illustrator #vector #ipadpro #adobe #adobesketch  Extremely honored to have been chosen by @ghoshal and @erondu to join 25 design leaders from AirBnB, Uber, Facebook, Slack, Google Ventures, IDEO and more for High Resolution, a 25 episode video series on design. Look for my episode focusing on creativity and leadership coming soon. @highrespodcast #creativity #leadership #design #podcast  Spent the morning with @the_chris_buck new book Uneasy which is a fantastic look at the work of one of the most creative people I know. Get your copy at #chrisbuck #photography #photographer #portraitphotography #portrait #portraits  Some days I feel like I should wear this @huckgee armor to work. #huckgee #urbanvinyl #mech #armor #toy #kidrobot #dunny  If you listen to The #CrazyOne podcast you have @lukewessman to thank for it. He gave me the push to finally launch it and it was one of the best decisions I've ever made. He is a constant inspiration, someone who makes me want to be a better man and I always feel lucky to count him as one of my friends. Thanks for the support brother. #crazyones #lukewessman #tattooartist #lag #crazyone
 I think the @supremenewyork X @mtanyctransit mash up is pretty genius. Finally got my hands on one today but after seeing the prices on eBay I may flip it before long. #supreme #supremenewyork #mta  A pile of pugs and a @steelers blanket - what else do you need on a day off? #pug #pugs #pugsofinstagram #steelers #yinz #burghproud #herewegosteelers  FYI - it's pronounced 'art' not 'toy'. These @huckgee pieces are hand made and can take up to a year to produce. #huckgee #robotech #mech #robot #urbanvinyl  Happy Valentines Day to @thechiclibrary - love of my life fierce and true. #chic #nyfw #fashion #love  Because of Snowmaggeddon in NYC I'm having to do my meetings from home today and apparently everyone thinks they are a Creative Director in this house. #pug #pugsofinstagram #design #creativedirector #puglife #designer #dogismycopilot
 Thanks to @the_villainess for an amazing work in progress shot of the soon to be crown jewel of our collection - a huge (8' wide) commission from @tristaneaton based on the lives of @thechiclibrary and I. Can't thank him enough knowing how busy he is and I'm SO F*CKING EXCITED!!! #streetart #streetartist #streetartnyc #streetartofficial #tristaneaton #tristaneatonart #tristaneatonmural  @visionaireworld X @louisvuitton from back in the day when Kidrobot actually made art toys #louisvuitton #lv #kidrobot #visionaire #visionaireworld #monogram #louisvuittonmonogram #murakami #takashimurakami  Got a vintage @huckgee Skullleader as a new addition to the collection #urbanvinyl #huckgee #mech #robotech #robot  @thechiclibrary in full effect at New York Fashion week for the photographers tonight in @ika_editions @blackscale and @tomford #nyfw #newyorkfashionweek  Forgot to mention I got to see @huckgee new Skullhead mech work in progress which I think is one of the best pieces he has ever done. I already put in dibs on at least one. #huckgee #huckgeeskullhead #urbanvinyl

Copyright © 2015 Stephen Gates