Finding Hooks: How To Follow Your Obsession Into Creative Work

September 8, 2011 - By 

Posted In:  Speaking Video
  • Thanks for coming to Hyper Island, it was a really cool lecture!

  • Love it ! Thank you for your inspiration & support 😉

  • I would die to be in a lecture by Nick.

  • Great speech Nick. Thanks for all your wisdom.

  • I really appreciate what you had to say. Understanding how things work is a huge part of how I learn. Your awesome!

  • Just listened to it. Nice honest approach that represents a large spectrum of designers I think. I liked you example…Give me 4 months to work on something, and I’ll dick around until I have one month left.

  • very inspiring, loved it

  • Great work!

  • So… What do you think about stockholm?

  • Hey Nick… I thought you were thoroughly attached to Maxon’s corporate teet… Why no mention that Cinema 4D R13 has now been released. I expected more from you…and I’m sure Maxon did too. WTF.

  • hi nick,

    I think u got in the same situtations through i m going right now. i wanna learn typography and color theory . can u suggest me the online art school where i can learn all the things.

  • awesome speech, no doubt!

    one thing, though: try standing still 😉 moving around too much just transposes your nervousness onto the audience…

    ty, for the speech!

  • Wow your story of how you got started is resonating (and sounding soooo familiar) so much right now, thanks for sharing!

  • This is EXACTLY what i needed to see. Thanks a loootttt Nick. A whole lot of things that u said makes sense coz i relate to it..and when u said that u r the last minute guy that u wud spend the last 2 weeks working of a 4 month project..i was like wow, I m not alone 😛 Gr8 video…very motivating!!!

  • wow what a tough crowd. Didn’t even give you an applause for your reel :/

    Great talk though. Really loved it! thanks for sharing

  • awesome advice Nick! I really appreciate it =)

  • Hi Nick! Thank you for your speech. I think i learned something each time i ear your podcast, live, tutorials,..etc. You know how to motivate people and i’m actually in a kind of strange situation. I graduate as a engineer in Design one year ago and i can’t find work because it’s a profession that isn’t really suiting to me and the companies don’t understand what we can do (because it’s note really Design). So when i heard your podcast and started to play around Cinema 4D and buy it, i have a feeling that i can do something i like and try to do my best.

    For now, i’m working on a modeling job on SketchUp and i can’t wait to finish because it’s boring (650 house to model as fast as i can. 6 month project :/ ) and i want to spend time on c4d! Actually, i’m searching community around me IRL to talk about 3D. Did you ever come to Switzerland? Do you know someone there? I’m really excited to learn stuff thanks to you!

    Sorry for the im-speaking-about-me-guy but i wanted to share my feelings about this.

  • Nice speach. Thank you.

  • Hi Nick,
    Really inspiring lecture – it was great to see you in Stockholm.

    Thanks for beeing awesome!

  • Did you match your pants and shirt to the colors in your logo on purpose? In case you did, nice.

  • Nick,
    Great talk, summed up my work ethic of learning trying and pushing things forward, trying hard to do more cool stuff with AE and C4D. Great to hear people that have a similar mind set to the creative flow, can you remember the name of the ‘Flow’ book you mentioned.

    Many thanks for all the tuts and the dedication.

  • Hey Nick, thanks for the talk. Very encouraging!

    I agree with Lee Williams about the “Flow” book, could you post the author? Pushing things forward every time is the way for me.
    I discovered Seth Godin’s “Linchpin” thanks to you and it has help me a lot. Things are getting less ugly with time!!!!

    Thanks again and keep it up!

  • Great video Nick, very Inspiring.
    Just wish I could have been there to see the Gorilla live.

  • I’ve been considering the Hyper Island motion graphics program for a while now. Similar to your past, my design fundamentals are lacking/non-existant. In your opinion, would the program at Hyper Island allow me to gain these fundamentals as I go, or will I get my ass kicked if I go into that program without improving my composition skills first?

  • Hey Nick!

    You must be me or ME must be you. Because I pretty much went the same path and feel the same way as u do. I also was obsessed for years about making and recording music( I still am!) and I also figured out that thats not the way for me to earn money. I then started drawing and got obsessed with that and wanted to figure out how that works. Luckily I found this beautiful book from Betty Edwards wich describes exactly what happens in our brain when we draw and how that freaky stuff works…

    Few years later I grabbed my drawings and went to a design company and BOOM (Nick Style) i got a new Job. Awesome experience.

    But here is the thing I wanna discuss with you:

    You say your thing is grabbing the premanufactured Legos and putting them together to make something new. And yes I’m always glad if I get some kind of Corporate Design and they tell me to make something nice out of that. “No problem Sir! Come back tomorrow and u’ll get what u want!”

    Making something from scratch is hard for me too BUT in my point of view its all about experience and get ur ass in that chair and make it. Just like u said!

    So if you say: “Making something out of nothing is not my thing.” sounds to me like thats also some kind of laziness..and I totally understand that because I have the exact same experience but also I learned that it is possible if u put the time in it just like everything else.

    When I started to play the piano there was no way I could write my own Songs on this thing. What the Heck?! How would I write my own Songs?! After now 14 years of making music and a lot of experimenting I can write a Song in 2 hours about any topic u like.

    I hope you get what i wanna say. Maybe I just didnt understand you right (Im german ^^). If so feel free to correct me.

    Anyway I love ur blog and I love what u do.
    Keep it up!

    • Not learning something is absolute laziness. But only if you WANT to learn it and you don’t. Anyone can learn to draw if they want to, i’m sure. But I just don’t. Ignore the things you are bad at that you don’t want to do. Spend time on the things that you are bad at that you DO want to do.

      • Ok that makes sense. I could learn to cook but I dont want to so I ignore it and eat spaghetti every day to have time for the things I want to learn (thats true actually).

        And by the way I argued with alot of people that everybody who is able to write a letter is also able to learn how to draw (infact writing IS drawing) and I think I never could convince anybody that this is the case. 95% of the people think drawing is a god given gift…at least where I live.

  • Dude, you are so me, or rather I am so you.. My first real project was like a duplicate of the Linkin Park band website, way back when flash was still in macromedia’s hands. And what I didn’t realize, not till your recent presentation at least, was that I actually am just like you. I need boundaries and I cannot be creative like inventor creative. When I make something “new” I make it out of ideas I’ve already seen somewhere and I said to myself “Oh man, that would be so cool to do” and I take few ideas and bash them together. I also hate boring part of school just as you did. Hopefully I’m gonna get the visa, obviously I’m from europe, and try and check out a school or something. I can and I do try and learn myself from tutorials and everything, and that’s just great, but I need, sometimes, someone to show me things I wouldn’t even think were important. Anyway, thanks, that was quite inspiring, too bad I just recently found your website and couldn’t be in that class.. oh no wait .. a room of creative people 😉 Cheers, hope to see you in person someday ^_^

    • Btw. I so couldn’t explain myself that learning from others is fine, I always wanted to create everything myself, but your time-stealing theory is so right. Finally I can check out tutorials without being guilty of stealing anything 🙂 Thanks for that.. also.

  • I have one motion reel that I admire and watch over and over again (sometimes frame by frame) just to see how it’s made. It was a company that was hiring a motion artist. (I’m sure they’ve already filled the position) I thought, If I’m going to get hired by this company in the future I need to duplicate the timing, style, use of music, creativity ect. to even get a chance to be considered by them.

  • you are really incredible, very inspiring for growing artists (me included)

  • I just had my very first typography class yesterday ^^

  • Nick, I’ve finally found someone who has the same vision on things. Great!

  • I really feel identify with your story man! and inspire me to make new choices today that have been make me crazy, in my country (Honduras) is not like a carreer in Motion graphics or 3D stuff and im in a generetion that need this things but is not professional people that do this things and i want to be professiional every day in the world of Motion Graphics! thanks for share with us your story, it was really helpfully

  • Hey Nick! I really like that presentation! I’m from germany, 14 years old and I’m F****ng interested in Graphic stuff! 😀
    I Love watching you doing that and I also love it to watch other people! I want to be good (Who doesn’t? 😀 ) But What could you tell me to do, to get better. I’m still trying to spend much time with Photoshop. But only Photoshop :S
    for me After Effects looks difficult I’m not sure if I can do that, I want to but… Yeah I don’t know it looks difficult.
    I hope you can help me bit.
    Best wishes from germany,

  • What’s in your pockets? Seems to be bulging.

  • This is a great lecture. You should put up your “ugly” stuff so we can get inspired by your progression. Like from where you came from to now.

  • Well done. Very motivating presentation!

  • Can you PLEASE come to Ringling College? It has been only two years since the Motion Design program started so it would be great to kinda direct us in positive direction!
    We have a club and we trying to bring the industry to Sarasota/Siesta Keys Area!

  • Great video, really helped me out seems i’m finishing school soon. Thanks

  • very usefull video !

    really helped my getting some things clear in my head.

    showed me some things i did wrong in the past, but didnt realise as mistakes.

    keep up your great work.

  • Just wanted to say thanks for the visit Nick!


  • Fuck, all this right, man) Hi from russian. Your thoughts amazing similar to mine. Wish you stay fine. Always can ask me to whatever help) See you!

  • Whats the name of the music in your movie where you show your work.

  • Does anyone know how to create in C4D a spear-throw animation like the one Scorpion does in Mortal Kombat? Please help.

  • Hey Nick, I really enjoyed this speech. A lot of your points about the creative process and learning from others really resonated with me. I think I’m very similar in the way I approach every new project, as if I’m figuring out a new system or set of rules, though the one thing I need to get past is the fear of making stuff that looks bad because that definitely limits what I produce. Although not a regular 3D/motion guy, I like to look into it every now and then as another tool I can use to make things look cool, so a huge thanks for all the tutorials and stuff you put up in this blog. Keep doing what you’re doing!

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.