Creators should have a visual trademark.

With the world becoming so visual, a distinct style is one of the easiest ways to stand out.

Here’s a thread of people to inspire you.

1. Wes Anderson: Pastel colors with vintage shades that look like they should be a poster.
2. Casey Neistat

With close up shots, messy handwriting, simple fonts, time lapses, drone shots, and symmetrical shots that are inspired by Wes Anderson, @Casey uses aesthetics to invite viewers into his life and make them feel like a friend.
3. Tim Urban

I’m drawn to creatives who give their audiences two opposing emotions. @waitbutwhy pairs the intensity of learning with the playfulness of humor.

His stick-figure drawings are instantly recognizable because they’re so distinct.
4. Shantell Martin

She’s an artist but the distinctiveness of her aesthetic should inspire us all.

On the Internet, you have to assume your ideas will be remixed. Thus, you “copyright your work” not with government-issues trademarks but with a style as unique as this.
5. Meagan Cignoli

In your quest to stand out, being unique is as important as being good at what you do. @MeaganCignoli’s animations vibrate with color and playful music that makes you smile, which makes them instantly recognizable.
6. Wear something unique

Distinctiveness doesn’t need to be difficult. Sometimes, it’s as easy as a signature outfit like Lex Friedman’s black suit, Casey Neistat’s glasses, or Seth Godin’s yellow glasses.

The important thing is to commit to something distinct.
7. Keith Haring

How much of his cultural influence results from his unique style?

In a world where art is becoming more niche, everybody can at least say “I recognize that look” whenever they see one of his drawings or something inspired by him.
8. Meagan Morrison

I recognize her bright colors, long brush strokes, sketch-like playfulness, and travel-inspired scenes whenever I see her drawings in magazines or floating around the Internet.

Meagan does a good job of matching her personal fashion to her paintings too.
9. Brian Grazer

The co-chairman of Imagine Entertainment, and the man behind movies like 8 Mile. He’s famous for his hair and credits part of his success to it. People describe him as “that Hollywood guy with the hair that stands straight up.”

Here’s the backstory.

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More from @david_perell

13 Mar
My favorite online creators are wonky.

They nerd out and produce things that nobody else could produce. Christopher Nolan is my favorite example, so I geeked out on his creative process to see how he made movies like Inception, Interstellar, and The Dark Knight.
Nolan's movies have grossed more than $5 billion.

Fans praise of his illustrious mastery of visual effects, beautiful establishing shots, epic soundtracks, and gripping action sequences.

This video outlines his creative process.

Wonkiness is an algorithm for fresh ideas.

Wonky people have an enthusiastic interest in the specialized details of their domain, and they ignore the social incentives that shame people for being different.

Here's my mini-essay. ImageImage
Read 4 tweets
2 Mar
My new essay is live!

Here’s the premise: America has become a Microwave Economy. We’ve overwhelmingly used our wealth to make the world cheaper instead of more beautiful, more functional instead of more meaningful.

It’s time to start prizing the soul.…
Microwave meals reflect a scary possible future: one that aims to distill the complexities of human nutrition into a scalable scientific formula, with lab-created foods that can be consumed in seconds, and where the negative externalities are unrecognized and unaccounted for.
The world loses its soul when we place too much weight on quantification.

When we do, we stop valuing what we know to be true, but can’t articulate. Rituals lose their significance, possessions lose their meaning, and things are valued only for their apparent utility.
Read 6 tweets
26 Feb
This video is a masterclass in psychology.

The first person to do something always looks weird. People laugh. Then somebody else joins. Then the crowds come in and the person who started the whole thing goes from looking like a goon to looking like a genius.
Humans are imitation machines.

You can see the roots of our imitative instincts in the history of English. In the time of Shakespeare, the word "ape" had two meanings: "primate" and "to imitate."

Here's the original video:…

(h/t @sivers)
True innovation is only fun in retrospect.

"As more people join in, it's less risky. So those that were sitting on the fence before now have no reason not to. They won't stand out, they won't be ridiculed, but they will be part of the in-crowd if they hurry." — @sivers
Read 5 tweets
25 Feb
The arc of Internet history bends towards making it easy for creators to monetize their work
Right now, the creator economy is right where Bitcoin was in 2016.

Outsiders are still skeptical, observers think they already missed the big gains, insiders know they’re onto something transformative, and the infrastructure that’s going to make it explode is still being built.
Good point from @arjunblj
Read 4 tweets
25 Feb
Writing consistently is the only way to escape the intellectual circles that the thinking mind gets trapped in.

So when your mind becomes a prison, the pen is your escape.
Once you start writing regularly, you observe the world differently, and once you do, you realize how little you’ve been seeing all along.

As the great biographer David McCollough says: “Look at your fish.”
We do our best thinking by writing because putting words on the page allows us to access higher orders of thinking — and in turn, gain clarity.

Sometimes, you realize your a genius. And sometimes, you realize that you’ve been missing the point all along.
Read 4 tweets
18 Feb
The biggest pattern I’m seeing with friends right now is watching them achieve everything they’ve wanted to achieve, only to realize that career success isn’t the dream they were promised
I don’t know @noampomsky personally, but I resonate with her observations here. How it is that our brightest and most talented people ace the SATs and attend the best schools in the world, only to work in.... management consulting.

That’s the trophy we’re chasing?
“I think that the ultimate way you and I get lucky is if you have some success early in life, you get to find out early it doesn’t mean anything. Which means you get to start early the work of figuring out what does mean something.”

— David Foster Wallace
Read 4 tweets

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