Eric Karjaluoto

Don’t Get in Your Own Way

When I started cooking, I was under the impression that complicated recipes made for better meals. So, I mixed together many ingredients, in weird combinations. (This frequently left me with inedible gruel.)

I hustled around, bouncing from one concoction to the next. Exhausted, I left the kitchen a disaster.

In time, I learned that a clear direction, and good ingredients—thoughtfully prepared—turned out better. (To my surprise, some of my best meals required few ingredients.)

Design is similar. Early in my career, I tried to be fancy. This commonly led to an indistinguishable mess.

Later, I learned that a clear direction, and good color/type/form—thoughtfully prepared—turned out better. This simple approach involves less fear, posturing, and inconsistency. Doing the job right—instead of pretending—is a calm activity.

My point? Don’t let your ego/desire get in the way of producing good design.

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