Selected Works



LAX Airport
Pioneer Zephyr
Rose Rabbit Lie

A journal about creative thinking.
Mostly words. Some pictures.

Always served hot.

Hot Pockets

Design sprints are like microwaving hot pockets. Creativity in a hurry sounds great, but you're almost certain to get burned.

Why will you die?

Why will you die?

This advertisement for a drug store may seem like clickbait from the turn of the century, but the headline is a chef's kiss.

The language is so expertly used, you can't help but think about your own mortality.

I don't know when I'll die, but why? Maybe I should look into that.

"Commercial rhymist" W.N. Bryant created these brilliant rhyming ads for Texas, Louisiana, and Indian Territory drugstores.

Whether or not they were effective is impossible to say. All I know is that W.N. Bryant's work has just been posted again in 2023. So there's that.

More can be found on the fantastic website Public Domain Review

Turn to Howlin'

Tone is everything. It's the voice, the emotion, and the feeling that makes something real.

When you're not there, your tone speaks for you. It exposes your work's core, purpose, and soul.

Blues legend Howlin' Wolf knew the potency of his tone. He filled each note, each word, each growl with his spirit and energy. And his tone? It was explosive. It struck a chord with those who experienced it. So intense was its resonance that all of rock and roll was built upon it.

Tone isn't just a set of knobs to tweak. It's not an on-and-off switch. It's a quest for authenticity, a pursuit of truth. It's born of raw emotions - sorrow, happiness, and everything in-between.

Once you've found it, don't let it slip away. And never settle for just one hue. Embrace the infinite shades of your feeling. Blues, after all, is an entire spectrum of sadness.

And most importantly, never compromise on authenticity. Don't adopt feelings that aren't rooted in the truth of your idea. As Wolf eloquently explained, "I couldn't do no yodelin', so I turned to howlin'. And it's done me just fine."

The right tone doesn't try to be something it isn't.

Bring out your inner howlin' self if you want your ideas to last long after being forgotten. Hit the right tone, and your ideas have a chance to be timeless and yes... even legendary.

My grandfather inspired this post, who, like Howlin' Wolf, brought his unique tone from Louisiana up north to Chicago and kicked off a wonderful inter-generational family bond through music.

Signal to Noise Podcast

I had a wonderful time with Filipe Carvalho talking about creativity, ecotones, belonging, and rolling down the hill of life.

Check it out here