I speak with artist and writer Austin Kleon — best known for his book Steal Like an Artist — about the benefits of using analog tools in a digital world.
We talk about Austin’s own unique office setup, which features an analog desk and a digital desk, and the unexpected power of going slow and working within constraints when you’re in the early stages of getting an idea off the ground.
The conversation features lots of practical tips on when to use analog and digital tools in your creative process, as well as ideas for setting up your workspace in a way that helps maintain your focus as you switch between tasks.
Key takeaways from the conversation:
- Why the best work often germinates in the analog space and gets executed in the digital space
- How moving your body in physical space can act as a “brain reset” to help you shift your focus
- When you should use a pencil and when you should use a keyboard as you execute on your ideas
- How the constraints of analog (pen, paper, books, etc) can super-charge your creativity
- Why the impulse to edit and/or tweak immediately can shut down the creative process
- How writing things by hand helps you learn better and infuses them with meaning