[Video] Your Inner Workflow Team

“…every creative effort is a bit like an A-Team episode. It requires four different mindsets – four distinct personalities with different skills and attitudes.”

This video presents one of the core ideas of Worklfow in under 4 minutes. If you prefer reading, a transcript appears below.

When I was a kid there was a famous series I used to watch, called The A-Team. In case you’re not familiar with it: it’s about a group of 4 guys, each with a unique personality and a specific set of skills. Hannibal was the man with the plan and a master of disguise; BA was a hot-headed muscle man and an excellent driver; ‘Face’ was a con artist with a soft spot for pretty girls; and Murdock was the barking mad pilot who could fly anything. And of course, every mission these guys had, somehow required most of these skills.

I was reminded of this TV series because in fact, every creative effort is a bit like an A-Team episode. It requires four different mindsets – four distinct personalities with different skills and attitudes.

Continue reading “[Video] Your Inner Workflow Team”

Workflow Weekly: Your Dream Project, Fearless Storyboarding, The Origins of Workflow (week #46)

As usual, a collection of recent Workflow highlights for you. For more tips and thoughts, head over to The Workflow Book’s Facebook page – where I’m posting Workflow thoughts, tips, quotes and updates [almost] every day!

Let’s Give Your Dream Project a Push!

Many of us have a ‘dream project’ – a special idea that we’ve been carrying around for years but never got around to actually making, because it never seemed to be “right time” for it.

If you have such an idea, I would like to meet you and help you start working on it. This is ENTIRELY FREE  (the only thing I ask in return is that you share the post with your friends). I’m doing it mainly for the thrill of meeting and helping passionate people with interesting ideas.

If that sounds like you, click the Facebook post below (if you can’t see it, here’s a link). Follow the instructions at the end, and I hope to Skype with you soon!

Fearless Storyboarding

A few weeks ago I flew to Moscow to give a talk about the two things main thing I’ve been involved in over the last decade or so: Workflow, and Storyboarding. I named the lecture ‘Fearless Storyboarding’. Here are a few photos, as well as some slides from the presentation:

The Origins of Workflow

This is a sketch from 2005 – February 5th 2005, to be exact. I was in Copenhagen at the time, animating on Asterix and the Vikings. I made this to remind myself to take a step back and work with more control (upper section), and also to try and do the trial-and-error in my head instead of on paper (lower section).

For me, this sketch represents the very beginning of what was later to become Workflow. I didn’t know at the time that this was going to be a book – I was just collecting helpful tips and thoughts about the creative process. But this sketched helped me so much, it made me interested in pursuing more workflow knowledge.

The full story of how the idea came about and why it happened when it did, is in the book’s preface – which you can read here:

Happy productive week, folks! May your work flow with confidence and ease 🙂


Is Your Computer Killing Your Ideas?

Everything in the digital world is easily undo-able, resize-able, zoom-in-able, copy-paste-able and changeable. But is that really a good thing?

My uncle David used to have a typewriter. This was 30 years ago, when a personal computer was still quite a new concept (let alone a home printer). As a kid who loved to read, the typewriter was an exciting and magical instrument for me: with it, I could literally create ‘real’ books!

One thing I do remember very clearly about using a typewriter Continue reading “Is Your Computer Killing Your Ideas?”

Core Concept: Working in Passes

To get a sense of what working in passes looks like, imagine seeing a cathedral from a great distance.

[Pages 119-157 in Workflow]

Working in passes is the controlled process of advancing your work one step (‘pass‘) at a time towards your vision. Every pass must be short, simple, and focus on improving just a few important aspects of the work.

To get a sense of what working in passes feels like, imagine seeing a cathedral from a great distance. Continue reading “Core Concept: Working in Passes”

Core Concept: The Premake

The premake has many names: model, maquette, demo recording, animatic, mock-up, synopsis, proof of concept, or simply ‘sketch’.

At the very heart of the creative process is the premake: a quick and rough capture of your vision. Think of the premake as an apparition in a fortune teller’s crystal ball: a small, blurred, distorted prophecy of what your finished work is going to be.

This quick sketch has almost as many names as there are forms of creativity. In architecture it’s called Continue reading “Core Concept: The Premake”

The Myth of “Write Drunk, Edit Sober”

Be reckless; be bold; be messy; be silly; be crazy. You can worry about elegance and craftsmanship later; that is, when you revisit and revise your work.

The advice “write drunk – edit sober”, often attributed to Ernest Hemingway, was never given by him – probably because it’s a terrible advice. (link: a report from someone who actually tried it).

However, there is a nugget of wisdom in it. A couple of nuggets, even. Continue reading “The Myth of “Write Drunk, Edit Sober””