Making time for inspiration

Categories Articles, How To

When our husband-and wife team graphic design studio, Mazzarello Media & Arts, launched in 2009 we knew we had to run our business and life in the most sustainable fashion. After all we launched in a not-so-friendly economic climate. Well over five years later we have more than doubled our business and have served over 100 unique clients. How have we done it people ask? Especially as a graphic design studio and a married couple that pretty much spends 24/7 together?

We found it was important to build a necessary interruption into the rhythm of our lives. That break serves as a milestone in our year and allows us to focus on a goal and build momentum towards it.

Rather than have our time be marked by the fiscal year or chronological year, we measure time by these moments of reflection and refueling. We don’t know what this will look like for us in the next five years but for the last five we have spent these interruptions refueling, by devouring creative inspiration while traveling.

That time of refueling and inspiration refills our creative tanks that we draw from each and every day for our clients. We first do this on a weekly level by working Monday through Thursday and reserving Fridays for reading design magazines and websites, hikes in the California Redwoods and visits to museums like San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and Oakland Museum of California.

On a bigger scale each year went set aside several weeks to travel abroad. Why travel you may ask? Why not something else? When we travel something amazing happens. Our eyes are opened, our minds expanded and we dream greater than we had before. We then can draw from the inspiration throughout the rest of the year.

We immerse ourselves in the language, culture, cuisine and art of each place. When we come home we have several thousand reference photos and hours of video. It is like oxygen for our creative souls.

Travel exposes us to many forms of creativity that touch all our senses. Languages are very stimulating to our ears, mouth, and mind. Signage, art, and architecture are very stimulating to our eyes. Food stimulates our palate.

Last summer we wondered what it would be like if our Instagram photos came to life, so we decided to create a video diary as we experienced each place. In past years we brought an iPhone and our trusty Nikon D300, but this time we added in a Nikon D7100 for video and a second camera. We created videos for Amsterdam, Paris, Rome and Copenhagen.

Bryan and Stephanie Mazzarello copenhagen church copenhagen library Haag Haag2 paris museum Paris rome metrorome maxxi

We hope these videos will inspire you to make time for inspiration in your own way and refuel your creative tanks. Go out there and find your necessary interruption.

This is a guest post by Bryan Mazzarello.

Catalin is the founder of Mostash - a social marketing boutique - and he's always happy to share his passion for graphic design & social media.
  • Jen Harp

    Sounds like an amazing way to keep creativity alive and fresh!