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Ivan's picture

77 ways to come up with an idea

neurons

Most of us come up with ideas for designs, logos or advertising concepts in the most unexpected places. In the shower or during jogging.

The reason for this is simple. While research and strategic planning should be done with full concentration, ideation is best done subconsciously. If you try to concentrate to come up with an idea sitting over a white piece of paper most of the time you will sweat blood and come up with nothing good. You need to put your mind to a state where you do think about the problem at hand in the background, but the primary focus is on something else.

Here is a list of many things you can do to help you take your mind away. Besides distracting you the exercises described below also activate your brain in different unexpected ways. This helps your brain to create new combinations of thoughts that may result in an idea.

It is beneficial to write down your brief as brief as possible and identify a few key subject matters that can easily kept in your mind before starting this unusual brainstorming. Make sure you have paper and pencil at hand so you can scribble down ideas.

Don't spend time evaluating them at this stage. The objective is to generate tons of ideas and explore many different directions.

1. Zoom in and out extremely on your subject in your mind
2. Take up the perspective of an ant and a bird
3. Look at your subject as if you were a priest / astronaut / vampire / prostitute
4. Examine your subject wearing pink glasses
5. Lie down on the floor
6. Hold your breath for 30 seconds
7. Put the company name behind bars
8. Write the company name SMS style
9. Curl up in your chair
10. Hyperventilate
11. Put the company name under-water
12. Imagine your subject glowing / radiating heat
13. Talk like Luke Skywalker
14. Write the company name on a bun
15. Write down 21 objects that the company's name remind you
16. Draw something for 60 seconds without lifting your pencil from the paper
17. Try not to blink for 60 seconds
18. Imagine shaving your eyebrows
19. Look at the ground for 60 seconds
20. Embrace yourself
21. Talk like a baby
22. Put something in your mouth and say the company name
23. Drink 2 glasses of water in one go
24. Write the company name on a tissue and wet it
25. Spend 20 minutes to come up with 20 ideas over a white sheet of paper
26. Turn on the music to the max
27. Take a leak / shower
28. Do 10 pushups (or at least try)
29. Scream: "I'm hungry!"
30. Pretend you're Neil French
31. Act like Marilyn Monroe
32. Open the dictionary on a random page and read the first entry
33. Pet your dog or something
34. Take a picture of yourself
35. Put earplugs in your ear
36. Sharpen your pencils
37. Take off your shoes
38. Look at the sky for 60 seconds
39. Pinch your nose and talk
40. Take off your socks and walk
41. Imagine your subject matter frozen if you can hold something cold
42. Count your money in your valet
43. Kick back and daydream
44. Play with a kid, a dog or a toy
45. Eat sweets
46. Browse the net with StumbleUpon
47. Act gay (or straight if you're gay)
48. Tidy up your office
49. Smell a flower or tea leafs
50. Wet your hair
51. Floss your teeth
52. Pinch yourself
53. Put something over yourself
54. Take off your shirt
55. Pretend playing golf
56. Pretend playing basketball
57. Kiss a lucky symbol
58. Blow soap bubbles or bubble gum
59. Make a prank call
60. Borrow an inexpensive object without asking
61. Draw a face on your finger
62. Wear something strange
63. Look at clouds and imagine there is a message
64. Count back from 27
65. Raise your both arms for 60 seconds
66. Do an air guitar solo or pretend playing the piano
67. Put chocolate to your mouth and resist the temptation to eat it
68. Shake your head
69. Pray like a ninja
70. Look out of the window and stare at one object for 30 seconds
71. Make a paper plane
72. Think about your subject as if it was made for the super rich
73. Type random characters and read it as if it was a secret code
74. Come up with 5 ridiculously lousy ideas
75. Think of a matching car for your product or service
76. Draw your client Dilbert style
77. Just close your eyes and relax

Commenting on this Blog entry is closed.

stephanie's picture
518 pencils

Pretty funny list. Perhaps next time I get stumped, I'll pray like a gay ninja. XD
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Perfectly Lost Designs

Ivan's picture

Love the sarcasm. :)

jcxm360's picture
86 pencils

Play chess against yourself

onegirlcreative's picture
1090 pencils

Is a walk through the grocery store. It's a plethora of graphic design. =P

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"I am not sick. I am broken. But I am happy as long as I can paint." ~ Frida Kahlo

www.onegirlcreative.com

Ivan's picture

So very true.

pokie's picture
1217 pencils

you should come work with me... ahhh I am sick of packaging.

S Baskar's picture
36 pencils

Thanks for the tips this is also like ways on "meditation"

Cheers,
Baski

octavian's picture
13 pencils

Read edward de bono "Lateral Thinking".We learn at school to think vertical (logical) that is very important but it`s not ideal for creativity.In this book are a lot of exercises to think differently about a problem.

darkprint's picture
46 pencils

hello can i display this article on http://www.istudentdesign.com
just wanna ask you the permission to display this article on the istudent design. i will put a link back to your website. thank you very much. hope to hear from u

thank you very much again.
i really appreciate your blog.

shovat's picture
13 pencils

nice to read and create

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