Thursday, January 28, 2010

An Ear for Passion

I watched and listened to our Director of Design, Steve Cullen, walk through a wall of thoughtful design for a client today. And although the client was mostly reacting to the offerings from what I perceived to be a place of gut-level reaction (much like the way an untrained eye such as mine reacts to art in a museum), I was fascinated by the depth of thinking and the absolute conviction with which Steve was describing every facet and detail of the work as he moved from typeface to iconography to palette.

What I realized is this: if you're talking passionately about something you love, I don't care what the topic, I will listen to you go on and on for hours on end. I might not agree with your point of view. I might not share your passion for the subject matter. But it doesn't matter if it's the history of salt, or why legs bend, or how a kite works, or the creation of a neon sign above Broadway, I will sit and listen and you will amaze me.

Sadly, I think the converse is also true. Which is to say, if you're talking about something I am drawn to from the deepest, most authentic place in my soul, and you're simply mumbling your way through your thoughts, you will lose me in the first five minutes. And odds are if it's something I really care about, you'll not only lose me, you'll upset me.

The bottom line is this: the world needs passion. It needs people who get excited about soap suds, and numbers, and produce, and design. And those people's voices need to be encouraged and heard. Many of us are ready to listen.

No comments:

the thoughts and opinions expressed below are entirely my own, and are not necessarily shared by my friends, family, or employer. (though they very well might be...)