Creativity & Innovation Secrets

Focus on the Essence

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As you create, focus on the "essence" - the central idea or concept. Ask yourself:

Why do I want to create? 

What is the central concept or the big idea that I want to express? 

What inspires me? 

What is the purpose?

Ask these uncomfortable but essential questions before you start creating, while zoning out the non-essential distractions. You need to strip the unnecessary and the unwanted, know and remind yourself of the purpose or the overall goal, and distill down to the essentials or the "essence". Never lose sight of the essence at any stage of the creative journey.

“What is real is not the external form, but the essence of things” - Constantin Brancusi

Ask the uncomfortable essential questions, while zoning out the non-essential noise. It will help you reach a Zen mind-state and achieve the clarity to be able to identify the essence and focus on it. It will enable you to create something meaningful and substantial.

Knowing the essence helps one leverage the advantages of being focused, and is best typified by the axiom - “less is more”.

Less is more…more so today, in the age of information deluge and overload. The axiom transcends design and time, and needs to be applied today, as we find ourselves and our customers being transformed into information zombies with near-zero attention spans.

Each empty pixel contrasts and amplifies the impact of a filled pixel. Fill it with the essential.

As businesses, our communication and advertisements are cluttered with information, trying to occupy every pixel of that prime digital online or print real estate — foregoing quality for quantity, instead of differentiating through a lot more powerful “less”: a simple graphic, a crisp message aimed at that information inundated customer. Don’t forget that space/emptiness is an essential ingredient of good design. Each empty pixel contrasts and amplifies the impact of a filled pixel. Fill it with the essential.

Simple is tough. It requires multiple iterations to simplify, and capture the essence, but it is worth it in the end. Don’t loose the essence of what you want to convey or communicate in a deluge of unnecessary and overwhelming information.

Focus on the Essence. Keep it simple and short. Less is more.


Learn more in the book ‘Creativity Secrets’: “CREATIVITY SECRETS: Creativity & Innovation Secrets for Design | Business | Art”, 2018, by Abhay Bhargava (Wharton grad, Artist, Entrepreneur).


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