Creativity is Remixing
In today's fast-paced world, originality is highly valued. The ability to create something entirely new and unique is the hallmark of creativity and innovation. However, the truth is that everything is partially original.
Everything in design is a remix.
Every creation is a product of many influences and inspirations, from the latest fashion trends to the newest technological innovations.
A remix is an amalgamation of different ideas, concepts, and inspirations combined to create something new. It is the art of taking something already existing and putting it together in a new and innovative way. In music, remixing involves taking an existing song and changing its tempo, beat, and melody to create a new version. Design involves taking current concepts, patterns, and ideas and combining them to create something refreshing and novel.
Every design is a remix of the past, present, and future.
It is a product of the designer's experiences, inspirations, and creative process.
Remixing is not just about copying an idea or concept. It is about taking the core essence of the idea and transforming it into something new and fresh. Recognizing the potential in something existing and using it to create something better. If you are a fan of creative advertising, you will find yourself surprised when you go through the archive of Joe La Pompe. He consistently showcases where celebrated ideas borrowed inspiration from. Some are exceptionally done, and others not so well.
Designers have been remixing for centuries.
For example, the Art Nouveau movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries was heavily influenced by the natural world.
It drew inspiration from flowers, plants, and animals and used them to create intricate and ornate designs.
Apple, the tech giant’s strength lies in redesigning existing technologies to attract a niche market. They remix it better than the original and have a fantastic narrative to back up the innovation. The iconic Mac OS remixed ideas from Unix, Linux, and Microsoft's OS (Yep!).
Lil Nas X's chart-topping Old Town road, with over a billion views on Youtube and multiple award wins, samples Nine Inch Nail's Ghost IV-34. When you hear the lyrics "I got the horses in the back..." that's a NIN sample in the background getting you saddled-up and riding.
Every creation is a remix of the ideas that came before it.
Remixing is not just a creative technique but also a business strategy. By remixing existing ideas and concepts, designers can create products and services that feel fresh, innovative, and appealing to their target audience.
If you doubt how good you are as a designer at this point in time. In that case, the best way to start is to broaden your sources of influence so that your mind has a deeper source to tap from to begin transforming existing concepts and ideas into relevant and timeless concepts.