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Inspirational Creativity Quotes

Sometimes you need a creativity boost.

Maybe your cup of coffee isn’t doing it. Or possibly, your day is off to a rough start. All it takes is a little jolt to see the world in a different perspective. While you may feel alone, even a creative design agency like us can feel this way some days too. Which is why we love creativity quotes. They cover our dojo’s screens, refreshing our minds. A few words at the right time can make all of the difference.

We’ve curated a list of our favorite creativity quotes to inspire. We hope you enjoy!

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

Creativity Quotes

How did we decide which creativity quotes made the cut? We’d love to say it was an ultra scientific process, but we have to admit it was a gut reaction. We had thousands to choose from, so our hope was to pick out unique ideas that made us feel something special.

The most important thing is that you love what you are doing, and the second that you are not afraid of where your next idea will lead.
― Charles Eames

There is no time for cut-and-dried monotony. There is time for work. And time for love. That leaves no other time.
― Coco Chanel

Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that’s why it is so complicated.
― Paul Rand

If you ever find that you’re the most talented person in the room, you need to find another room.
― Austin Kleon

Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.
― Albert Einstein

Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else and thinking something different.
― Albert Szent-Györgyi

You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.
― Maya Angelou

The life of a designer is a life of fight: fight against the ugliness.
― Massimo Vignelli

If a composer suffers from loss of sleep and his sleeplessness induces him to turn out masterpieces, what a profitable loss it is!
― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.
― Pablo Picasso

Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.
― Brené Brown

Creativity is that marvelous capacity to grasp mutually distinct realities and draw a spark from their juxtaposition.
― Max Ernst

We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.
― Kurt Vonnegut

Design cannot rescue failed content.
― Edward R. Tufte

You have to be willing to spend time making things for no known reason.
― Lynda Barry

Our species is the only creative species, and it has only one creative instrument, the individual mind and spirit of man. Nothing was ever created by two men. There are no good collaborations, whether in music, in art, in poetry, in mathematics, in philosophy. Once the miracle of creation has taken place, the group can build and extend it, but the group never invents anything. The preciousness lies in the lonely mind of a man.
― John Steinbeck

There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it’s going to be a butterfly.
― R. Buckminster Fuller

If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.
― Ken Robinson

There’s a fine line between minimalism and not trying very hard.
― Tom Pappalardo

I don’t believe in this ‘gifted few’ concept, just in people doing things they are really interested in doing.
― Charles Eames

The question is not if we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. The nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists.
― Martin Luther King Jr.

Good design is obvious. Great design is transparent.
― Joe Sparano

Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That’s why it’s so hard.
― David McCullough

Design is the silent ambassador of your brand.
― Paul Rand

I force myself to contradict myself in order to avoid conforming to my own taste.
― Marcel Duchamp

That’s the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you.
― Ray Bradbury

Designers shouldn’t design for museums any more than mummies should die for them.
― Ralph Caplan

An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.
― Oscar Wilde

Thinking about design is hard, but not thinking about it can be disastrous.
― Ralph Caplan

Everyone is born a genius, but the process of living de-geniuses them.
― R. Buckminster Fuller

Dance above the surface of the world. Let your thoughts lift you into creativity that is not hampered by opinion.
― Red Haircrow

Design creates culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future.
― Robert L. Peters

A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.
― Douglas Adams

Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Every one who has taken a shower has had an idea. It’s the person who gets out of the shower, dries off and does something about it that makes a difference.
― Nolan Bushnell

First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won’t. Habit is persistence in practice.
― Octavia E. Butler

To be an artist means never to avert one’s eyes.
― Akira Kurosawa

Everyone is born creative; everyone is given a box of crayons in kindergarten. Then when you hit puberty they take the crayons away and replace them with dry, uninspiring books on algebra, history, etc. Being suddenly hit years later with the ‘creative bug’ is just a wee voice telling you, ‘I’d like my crayons back, please.’
― Hugh MacLeod

Designing a product is designing a relationship.
― Steve Rogers

Every morning I jump out of bed and step on a landmine. The landmine is me. After the explosion, I spend the rest of the day putting the pieces together.
― Ray Bradbury

A man who works with his hands is a laborer; a man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman; but a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist.
― Louis Nizer

Any product that needs a manual to work is broken.
― Elon Musk

Art is not just a display of beauty. Art also reflects what is ugly, and it celebrates the grotesque. An artist frequently creates what we describe as beautiful by depicting what is at first glance unpleasing, peculiar, or abnormal and casting the unpleasant, strange, or outlandish images into a more agreeable light that reaches deeper truths.
― Kilroy J. Oldster

As a designer, you have to think in time and see things in sequence. You have to see information as a narrative form.
– Paul Mijksenaar

You’re mind is working at its best when you’re being paranoid. You explore every avenue and possibility of your situation
at high speed with total clarity.
― Banksy

But the conquest of the physical world is not man’s only duty. He is also enjoined to conquer the great wilderness of himself. The precise role of the artist, then, is to illuminate that darkness, blaze roads through that vast forest, so that we will not, in all our doing, lose sight of its purpose, which is, after all, to make the world a more human dwelling place.
― James Baldwin

Put down everything that comes into your head and then you’re a writer. But an author is one who can judge his own stuff’s worth, without pity, and destroy most of it.
― Colette

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.
― Steve Jobs

Everyone pretends to be ‘free thinkers’, but few individuals pass the line into expressive territories that may be detrimental to their own social well-being.
― Criss Jami

Imitation is suicide.
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Creativity is just about connecting things. A whole lot of nonsense put together, and diluted with a creative passion can eventually make sense.
― Chinonye J. Chidolue

When you want to know how things really work, study them when they’re coming apart.
― William Gibson

I’ve been all over the world and I’ve never seen a statue of a critic.
― Leonard Bernstein

Style is a matter of taste, design a matter of principles.
― Thomas Church

Despair and disappointment are the parent of countless inspired, inspiring, triumphant creations.
― Rasheed Ogunlaru

I lived in books more than I lived anywhere else.
― Neil Gaiman

Simplicity is about subtracting the obvious and adding the meaningful.
― John Maeda

If you can design one thing, you can design everything.
― Massimo Vignelli

This tremendous world I have inside of me. How to free myself, and this world, without tearing myself to pieces. And rather tear myself to a thousand pieces than be buried with this world within me.
― Franz Kafka

Why start if you are going to do a half-assed job anyway?
― Monika Zands

You can never solve a problem on the level on which it was created.
― Albert Einstein

Typography is two-dimensional architecture, based on experience and imagination, and guided by rules and readability.
― Hermann Zapf

I have stared long enough at the glowing flat rectangles of computer screens. Let us give more time for doing things in the real world . . . plant a plant, walk the dogs, read a real book, go to the opera.
― Edward R. Tufte

Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.
― Banksy

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.
― R. Buckminster Fuller

We all have 10,000 bad drawings in us. The sooner we get them out the better.
― Walt Stanchfield

I have two righteous addictions. Firstly are my observations. Secondly, my imaginations.
― T.D. Otis

Art is the only way to run away without leaving home.
― Twyla Tharp

Go for broke. Always try and do too much. Dispense with safety nets. Take a deep breath before you begin talking. Aim for the stars. Keep grinning. Be bloody-minded. Argue with the world. And never forget that writing is as close as we get to keeping a hold on the thousand and one things–childhood, certainties, cities, doubts, dreams, instants, phrases, parents, loves–that go on slipping , like sand, through our fingers.
― Salman Rushdie

The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.
― Ayn Rand

Routine kills creative thought.
― Scarlett Thomas

Find what gave you emotion; what the action was that gave you excitement. Then write it down making it clear so that the reader can see it too. Prose is architecture, not interior decoration, and the Baroque is over.
― Ernest Hemingway

A design can excel at one challenge only by compromising at others.
― Steven Pinker

In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for constructive use of solitude. One must overcome the fear of being alone.
― Rollo May

Do not do what someone else could do as well as you. Do not say, do not write what someone else could say, could write as well as you. Care for nothing in yourself but what you feel exists nowhere else. And, out of yourself create, impatiently or patiently, the most irreplaceable of beings.
― André Gide

Fashion is a language that creates itself in clothes to interpret reality.
― Karl Lagerfeld

Is there magic in this world? Certainly! But it is not the kind of magic written about in fantasy stories. It is the kind of magic that comes from ideas and the hard work it often takes to make them real.
― Robert Fanney

We are weighed down, every moment, by the conception and the sensation of Time. And there are but two means of escaping and forgetting this nightmare: pleasure and work. Pleasure consumes us. Work strengthens us. Let us choose.
― Charles Baudelaire

Thank goodness I was never sent to school; it would have rubbed off some of the originality.
― Beatrix Potter

Don’t play what’s there; play what’s not there.
― Miles Dav

Design is a fundamental human activity, relevant and useful to everyone. Anything humans create—be it product, communication or system—is a result of the process of making inspiration real.
― Maggie Macnab

Fiction is the truth inside the lie.
― Stephen King

The life of the creative man is lead, directed and controlled by boredom. Avoiding boredom is one of our most important purposes.
― Saul Steinberg

Simple is good.
― Jim Henson

Clear thinking at the wrong moment can stifle creativity.
― Karl Lagerfeld

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.
― Steve Jobs

People want to forget the impossible. It makes their world safer.
― Neil Gaiman

The urge to destroy is also a creative urge.
― Mikhail Bakunin

Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as writer.
― Ray Bradbury

All profound distraction opens certain doors. You have to allow yourself to be distracted when you are unable to concentrate.
― Julio Cortázar

When the creative impulse sweeps over you, grab it. You grab it and honor it and use it, because momentum is a rare gift.
― Justina Chen

Nobody can tell you if what you’re doing is good, meaningful or worthwhile. The more compelling the path, the more lonely it is.
― Hugh MacLeod

If critics say your work stinks it’s because they want it to stink and they can make it stink by scaring you into conformity with their comfortable little standards. Standards so low that they can no longer be considered “dangerous” but set in place in their compartmental understandings.
― Jack Kerouac

It’s easy to attack and destroy an act of creation. It’s a lot more difficult to perform one.
― Chuck Palahniuk

Typography is the craft of endowing human language with a durable visual form.
― Robert Bringhurst

A deadline is, simply put, optimism in its most kick-ass form. It’s a potent force that, when wielded with respect, will level any obstacle in its path.
― Chris Baty

Draw the art you want to see, start the business you want to run, play the music you want to hear, write the books you want to read, build the products you want to use – do the work you want to see done.
― Austin Kleon

When you have wit of your own, it’s a pleasure to credit other people for theirs.
― Criss Jami

A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which to look ahead.
― Graham Greene

I think that perhaps if I had had to slow down the ideas so that I could capture them on paper I might have stifled some of them.
― J.K. Rowling

I really do believe that all of you are at the beginning of a wonderful journey. As you start traveling down that road of life, remember this: There are never enough comfort stops. The places you’re going to are never on the map. And once you get that map out, you won’t be able to re-fold it no matter how smart you are. So forget the map, roll down the windows, and whenever you can pull over and have picnic with a pig.
― Jim Henson

What about confusing clutter? Information overload? Doesn’t data have to be “boiled down” and “simplified”? These common questions miss the point, for the quantity of detail is an issue completely separate from the difficulty of reading. Clutter and confusion are failures of design, not attributes of information.
― Edward R. Tufte

Artists are those who can evade the verbose.
― Haruki Murakami

You must forget all your theories, all your ideas before the subject. What part of these is really your own will be expressed in your expression of the emotion awakened in you by the subject.
― Henri Matisse

I’ve always felt that the best whips and chains are in the mind. With a little creativity, the physical ones are hardly necessary.
― Jim Butcher

The creative act is not performed by the artist alone; the spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and interpreting its inner qualifications and thus adds his contribution to the creative act.
― Marcel Duchamp

Your objective should always be to eliminate instructions entirely by making everything self-explanatory, or as close to it as possible. When instructions are absolutely necessary, cut them back to a bare minimum.
― Steve Krug

The artist is a collector of things imaginary or real. He accumulates things with the same enthusiasm that a little boy stuffs his pockets. The scrap heap and the museum are embraced with equal curiosity. He takes snapshots, makes notes and records impressions on tablecloths or newspapers, on backs of envelopes or matchbooks. Why one thing and not another is part of the mystery, but he is omnivorous.
― Paul Rand

The public wants work which flatters its illusions.
― Gustave Flaubert

Nothing is more important than an unread library.
– John Waters

Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.
― C.E.M. Joad

If your business plan depends on suddenly being “discovered” by some big shot, your plan will probably fail. Nobody suddenly discovers anything. Things are made slowly and in pain.
― Hugh MacLeod

The dumbest mistake is viewing design as something you do at the end of the process to ‘tidy up’ the mess, as opposed to understanding it’s a ‘day one’ issue and part of everything.
― Tom Peterson

Take your pleasure seriously.
― Charles Eames

The thing is to become a master and in your old age to acquire the courage to do what children did when they knew nothing.
― Ernest Hemingway

Creative activity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.
― Arthur Koestler

Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.
― Andy Warhol

You become more divine as you become more creative. All the religions of the world have said God is the creator. I don’t know whether he is the creator or not, but one thing I know: the more creative you become, the more godly you become. When your creativity comes to a climax, when your whole life becomes creative, you live in God.
― Osho

Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.
― Martin Luther King Jr.

The principal mark of genius is not perfection but originality, the opening of new frontiers.
― Arthur Koestler

Creativity is the residue of time wasted.
― Albert Einstein

Strangeness is a necessary ingredient in beauty.
― Charles Baudelaire

A little talent is a good thing to have if you want to be a writer. But the only real requirement is the ability to remember every scar.
― Stephen King

You don’t want to look like your heroes, you want to see like your heroes.
― Austin Kleon

One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.
― Friedrich Nietzsche


Do you have any favorite Creativity Quotes we missed?

We hope you’ve enjoyed our massive list of creativity quotes. If you’ve found a few creativity quotes we’ve missed please let us know in the comments section below and we’ll flow them into our next list. Wishing you an inspirational day!

Quotes found via Good Reads, Brainy Quote, Pinterest, and our own personal collection.


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