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Bold & Fearless Design

Lesson 19 of 26

Feck Perfuction

James Victore

Bold & Fearless Design

James Victore

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Lesson Info

19. Feck Perfuction

Lesson Info

Feck Perfuction

So this is important. This idea is important because I know that a lot of us as designers were really concerned with perfection. And I don't know if you saw, but we filmed a little. We filmed a little promo for this this this class in in the studio in New York a couple months ago. And it was about perfection. Ongoing, basically kind of give you the longer version of that. And I have over the years I've realized that, um, with lengths that we go to have perfection in our lives in our work really drives us crazy. You know, even in our forget work for a time, he even just our personal lives. You know that you're not that, you know. You know, it's asked Laura how much sweating I did about With what? What? You're gonna have me in front of a camera for two days right after the holidays. Are you kidding me? I should look, look like pumpkin pie, you know, like, are you kidding? Like my concern for that? That level of perfection drove me crazy, right? You know, um, perfection stops us from doin...

g so much stuff. It stops us from starting jobs for beginning even relationships because we're not perfect, you know, Or especially in relationships from continuing relationships. Oh, you know, he was a little over, you know, I mean, like, because you're looking for your looking at We're looking for perfection. You know, television and movies and advertising doesn't help us either, because of the images and the And the idea is that they put out is kind of ludicrous, kind of unattainable. And I watch it Mountain Dew commercial. And I'm like, my friends Ain't that beautiful? Where these people can I go hang out with them? You know, it's kind of crazy. Um, so it stops us from starting projects. And as designers, it stops us from finishing things or showing our work shipping. Our work is not done. You know what? We're having this conversation earlier, right? It will never be done. It will never be done. That's the truth. You know, on my on my on my tombstone inch and say, Just when I had it figured out like, you know, five more minutes, Ma, you know, it's like, um and I found over the years since I make stickers, I found that if it's on a sticker. It must be true. So what I'm gonna do is I have made perfect perfection stickers. So for you guys here, take one and pass them on. And I have I have mawr. So if after the class you want Bunches for friends, we have Yes, sir. Shirt online with that seem element right now. We may get to that way. May talk about that idea, Mr Rana, thank you very much. So the thing is, I think that we we really poop on ourselves with his perfection thing and you know how like OK, so I was mentioning this guy, Chris Thompson, this assistant that I had for for a bunch of years. He was really great at at this with me, because I'm a closet perfectionist. I'm a recovering perfectionist because I will do. I will take a drawing that is just like with some It's crazy, right? Nasty Harry Brush. And I'll draw three letters and then throw it away. Three letters and throat draw three. Let and and I'll drive myself crazy. I have a stack of paper is big seeking perfection. And what I've been able to do now is I've been able to really back light, lighten up and and and basically draw it two or three times. But, you know, choose the first because I look at it and I'm like, It's not perfect for me, but nobody else cares about that. Nobody else cares that. It's after the holidays and James Victoria's been having a lot of turkey. It's like, You know, nobody cares. I would Chris was responsible for. Well, I'll tell the story. There's this. There's a fun story later that crystal that that Chris help me with terribly. The thing is, again, the perfection thing. Perfection isn't interesting. You know what's interesting? Flaws. That's what people respond to your flaws. You look like you look at the great, even the great beauties of the world. They've got long noses. They've got, you know, weird ears. They've got their eyes are too close together. Their You know what I mean. We don't want we don't really want Perfect. They did. They did a study about two years ago. They took all these beautiful faces and they brought him into ah into one and t to find the perfect face. And it was kind of milk toast. It was kind of oatmeal. It's like, Oh, really? That's what I have been waiting for. I want to meet her, you know, here, while we're on the topic of perfection. Yeah, a couple of votes on this one. But people in the chat just want to know, What's your opinion on what causes this perfectionism? Is it a fear of something? Is it something that's learned over time? What is your opinion on that? Give me a second deep question. That's a great question. Yeah, I think I think there is. I think it's learned over time, and I think it is definitely a fear based thing. And I think it's that we are so unsure of ourselves, were so afraid to be ourselves that we want. We look over our shoulders who are always what's What's the expression? Um uh, looking over to somebody else's grass? What's that? Grass is always greener, right? That's what it is. And that's just something that I think naturally inherent in people. You know, like, um, I think that we often are so untrusting of ourselves because I should. I know. And you guys should know. You know, I look around because I've got, like, fancy pants. Friends. I got friends who are just like you there. I got friends who are millionaires. I kid you not, And they're, like, 10 years younger than I am 15 years younger. And I'm like, Damn, you got it sewn up, man. And they're like, Really, You want to hear, like, you think you think everybody else has got something better than you, and it's not true. Remember, whatever you're thinking is wrong. You think that every other other people have got their stuff all sewn up? You know, Johnny Cash genius Johnny Cash once were, You know, he was We were talking. I would wish he was talking about, um, don't ask about money about being wealthy. And he said having money just means you get to worry about everything else, you know? And I think that's the perfection thing to is that way you're so concerned with, you know what other people have. And I think if we really saw the, um, the social diagram that was going on, how you know, I was envious of him because of this, But he's envious. Like all these diagrams. It would be a massive be crazy you know, um, so I want to show you something. I was traveling a bunch of years ago, coming years ago, and I was in an airport, go about to go on a long trip, was like and have a book to read. So I go to the bookstore. I'm just I'm going through the I don't know what was called a religious or self help or whatever it is on. Guy was just looking at something kind of moving something author, that I haven't, you know, that I haven't read in a while, and I found this book that I just I was like, Oh, it was just one of one coffee and Alec, etc. Was the spine. I was like, That's brilliant, That's sexy. And I pull it out and, um, the spine looks like this. I'm like, Wow, this is genius. And I know I opened the book and I'm and I'm looking at it. I'm like, Oh, my God, this is amazing. So this book is, um, um written by this genius author named Paymer showed run right and payment writes on Buddhists subjects, and she's amazing. And the book is called comfortable with uncertainty. This is exactly what we're talking about effect, perfection, comfortable with uncertainty, being open, for for things to happen in your life and being comfortable with being uncomfortable. And I'm looking further at the book, and I realized that why this spying is so beautiful is because it's put on the books wrong. It slid two inches to the left, and but I've realized it is the most perfect cover for this book because it's completely comfortable with being wrong. Until I realized, Oh, it's not wrong. It is literally a mistake that escaped the machine somehow and found its way to me, which is brilliant. And I'm like This is now the most perfect cover for this book because if you if I don't know if you read any of these books of by Buddhist authors. But one of the covers usually look like what's the imagery on most of his covers? Brush a brush strokes, perfect circle Buddha, the lotus floating in a pond or a path road somewhere, or a path or a fink for think boring. Obviously, the designers for these books don't read these books because these air powerful, moving, beautiful works. But designers don't read him, so they put a cliche on it. An unthought, stinky little lotus flower. Let's give it one from column A and one common Big Next. Get paid now. But this is beautiful. This is perfect. Otherwise it's just another Buddhist book with Let's pick some nice colors. Make some random type decisions, Yes. So how do you deal with a client that once that cliche thing there, you know, want to fit in with what's going on? You know, you try to talk to them, to talk is to love, and you try to educate them and tell him this, you know, right up front, say, Oh my God, that's such a great opportunity. I love these books. I love this author I like, you know, I think more people should get him, get him excited, and I'll be sexy. And if they don't go for it and show them the new thing and they don't go for it and get paid, don't find wife. You know, if you're interested in the fight personally, I think again there's a level of perfection there. You're like, No, you go ahead. This is the better answer. Listen to me. You know stop being right. We're not right. The choices I make are not the right answer. They just happen to be good. And I happen to have extremely good luck and finding clients who trust me. Um, so that's yeah, that's a definite interesting question is dealing with dealing with that, but because no publisher on the planet would ever go for this because it has to be very readable on the spine and blah de blah, blah, blah. And the fact that this, you know, we could weaken design a book. I mean, my book is pretty experimental people people wrote in when we got had to turn it sideways. Oh, I'm so sorry for you. Are you exhausted? Can I come besides your neck? Like I was reading it then the picture was like this. Oh, my God. How, uh or you have your create your style, then it seems like you might Are you getting more clients become attractive for that? You put it out, put it out into the universe, you know, and even even just even just saying, you know, like the kill, the critic thing, the consciousness even just constantly putting us into yourself, saying I'm sexy and I deserve this. I'm not asking too much of the world. You know, the world wants you happy The universe wants you happy, you know, um, roomy again. He says the universe wants you happy. Stop spreading your pain. How? Right? Stop being a dick. You're a beautiful, sexy woman. Don't accept any other version of you from from anybody, anybody, even family. That's an interesting idea, you know, way put our work out or we say, Hey, I'm going to start a new business. And what is your family go in this economy? You sure? What do you know about business? And they love you. And what they want to do is they want to shield you from failure. But all they're doing is keeping you from success. So you say Thank you. I'm not gonna listen to you. I'm gonna go do this. I'm worthy. I'm smart. I'm capable. Thank you for your complete lack of confidence. And no, you can't borrow money from me in the future. Uh, this is the truth. We seek perfection. But life is messy. It's just how it works. It's cool. It's cool. Once you accept that, you know you know what's really awesome I've seen before and I'm not sure I should even just go here. But you know what's really cool about five year olds? Because they could do this way. Can't. Who cares? Who cares? Because they haven't learned the crap that we've learned. Someone's gonna You know, someday they're going to do that and people gonna laugh and all of sudden how that hurts. Why don't you just ruin this kid? You know, it's crazy crazy. I'm going back to six per again perfection and, um, in. And I'm not as tight on this. This piece, this play as I am, uh, some of the others. As you like it. There's a character, two male or female, and the woman is trying to tell the man her loved one how much she loves him. It's like our coffee notes, more coffee notes, this constant constant trying to say this'll much more. This much right, And in it is a line where she says to him, You and I m one. And what's wrong with that grammar? It's improper grammar, but because it's improper grammar, what does it say? It's really we are you when I and one entity. Not that we are, because that's two people we am. And it's funny because I knew this story. I knew this line and I went to the bookstore and I went looking it up. And I found one of those books that has got Shakespeare here, and they translate it for you. Here they make it, you know, they simplify it over here, but it's got this translation and I look over on that side and your it says you and I are one. They they dangerous. They castrated Shakespeare right in front of you. They took the magic out. Yeah, why Grammar? We have rolls around here. We do things a certain way. Can't have bad grammar from Mr Shaky Spear, you know? And that's also something that we that we shoot for in the studio is We shoot for this level of imperfection. We tried. We tried to create this level of imperfection. We search for the wrong ist answer. The wrong ist answer is interesting. It's exciting, you know. It's not secure, is not safe, you know, And that's what again, that's what we're trying to do with this with this typography thing. That we did is trying to get you guys vulnerable, afraid because your vulnerability is sexy. You know, Um, it's this idea of, in the particular lies, the Universal, which I mentioned earlier. Um, Louis C K. You guys know Louis CK the comedian, right? Really funny guy. He's at his funniest when he's at his deepest, most personal. When he's divulging something of himself, that's hard to do. That's scary, because, But that's the where the good stuff is. If you can put that in your work, you know, and a lot of a lot of times there's this. There's a situation where you know I'm in class and I'll have something will go through the credit. We'll go through a creative work and I'll see somebody's working on, and I'll get to know them after a while and I'll be able to take him aside and say, Hey, you know, you are extreme. I notice in class, I see you how you were. Competing people really respond to you, and you're very funny and you're very charming. You're very smart. Put it in your work. It were extinct because you're trying to be a designer you're trying to follow rules. You've got some something ideas about typography and color that you're trying to express in decoration. Those air week, those air a week compared to who you are compared. Toa compared to your charming, goofy awkwardness. And that's what make you even in a relationship situation that schools was gonna make you sexy. Is your being vulnerable cause, you know, you have to remember, um, nobody's perfect, not you, not po buddy and always remember what's better than perfect. What's better than perfect? Don is battered and perfect. Correct. Done is better than perfect. My better for my Spanish speaking friends. But there, um, do you guys know Leonard Cohen? The singer? Leonard Cohen? Awesome. He's a song called Anthem, and in it, he says, Um, forget your perfect offering. There's a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in. That's awesome. Your flaws or what makes you attractive. The flaws in your work is what makes your work attractive, and you in your work is what makes you attractive

Class Description

Short on time? This class is available HERE as a Fast Class, exclusively for Creator Pass subscribers.

An empowered designer is a truly creative designer. Let designer, author, artist, and activist, James Victore show you how to trust your instinct and embrace imperfection in Bold & Fearless Design.

When you follow the trends your ideas stagnate and you don’t create the kind of memorable pieces that get you noticed. Victore knows the antidote to that creative rut. Victore has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and is represented in the permanent collections of museums worldwide. His commercial work continues to wow by being sexy, strong, and memorable.

Learn how you can make work that is captivating and uniquely you by taking a behind-the-scenes look at this renowned designer’s method, thinking, and inspiration. Victore will talk about playing with different tools (not just digital ones) and rethinking the role of a designer. 

You’ll learn:

  • Exercises for generating concepts and design solutions
  • How to incorporate your hand into your work
  • Unexpected image-making tools and techniques
  • Software strategies for turning the analog into digital

Poster design inspiration is the perfect blank canvas for experimentation. Posters can be adapted for anything from a book covers to dinner plates. In this class, the poster format provides a launching point for discussing by-hand design and reimagining creative possibilities.

Don’t be boring. Watch Bold & Fearless Design with James Victore and energize your unique creative spark.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

James Victore - 10 Type Rules

bonus material

James Victore - Bold and Fearless Poster Design Course Supplies.pdf

James Victore - Litter Poster Client Brief.pdf

James Victore - Suggested Reading List.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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I am not a graphic designer, I'm an artist, but this class translates beautifully. James' teaching style is nothing short of delicious - fresh, alive, fun, exciting - while being full of depth and poignant, valuable content, much of which transcends medium and brings value to any creative individual. I found particular value in the lessons around tools (and altering tools), the criteria for good work, the need to infuse your opinion into your work, the value of abandoning perfection, paying attention to cancer that is one's ego and that we are meant to be creators, and not 'the help'. More than anything else though, I benefited from being reminded, with such a burning passion, that we are not put on this earth to pay a mortgage and support a family, but to identify our true work and to bring it into existence in this world. So nice to reminded of something I know but forget on a regular basis. One of the best online classes I have ever taken - a real home run.


I loved this course! Exceeded every notion I had. The design, concepts and principles were fun, funny and insightful. But James went so far beyond the "poster design" and into the philosophy, thinking, inspiration - huge! I am so glad I watched this course not only for the quick wit and fast humor (Jame's is smart! Sharp... And Really Funny - compliments his teaching and design), but the reading list he suggests, ways to nudge your creativity and the fashion with which he gets you thinking... Invaluable! Organic, Rich, Impact and message - this course has the design "how-to" covered, the real pearls are Jame's humble experience and generosity. Great Course... Oh, and check out his book! "Victore! or, Who Died and Made You Boss?" Inspiration and fun!

a Creativelive Student

Came to this course (and site) via Anna Dorfman's blog. Loved the motivational and philosophical aspects of the course. Very entertaining and inspirational. Also loved listening to Victore discuss his own work and process-- the stories of how he got specific ideas, tinkered with them, perfected them, etc.. As for the critiques of student and online work, I didn't find them very useful. I would love to see him pick out a few of the very best, and then give his own short and sweet-- and specific-- insights into how HE would improve them. Or just abandon the critiques entirely and instead show and discuss more of his own or other successful designers' work. Overall, fun and inspirational, with some helpful tips.