Early in my career, design was all about being cool and trendy. The latest Blondie album cover inspired by her platinum persona. Punked out and plaid Viviane Westwood, designer to the infamous Sex Pistols. I knew design had power, but didn’t realize how much.

Architecture has the ability to shelter you from the elements, to meet your basic human needs. But design can inspire you to vote. To join a cause. To change the world.

After a couple of decades in the business, I realize design isn’t about stunning imagery or hip colors (although both certainly help). It gives you the ability to connect. To tell stories. To understand others. It breaks down complicated ideas into simple, understandable bites of information that inspire action. Design at its best promotes new ways of seeing, learning and engaging.

Design Starts With Asking the Right Questions

When you walk through our door, the questions begin. What is your brand essence? What do you own that no one else can claim? Who are we talking to? What motivates them to action? How do we launch stories straight into their heart? What sticks and won’t let go? What questions have we not asked?

Good design demands being insatiably curious, part Sherlock Holmes investigating, probing, part Indiana Jones exploring, taking risks. Design requires thinking. Turning things upside down, inside out.

Nothing less will mine that evasive, golden nugget of truth.