Leopoldo Leal Explores The Eight Stages Of Creativity Through His Graphic Design Book

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Keith Sawyer, who studied creativity for over twenty years, suggests eight stages to the creative process. He concludes that the stages are as followed: Ask, Learn, Look, Play, Think, Fuse, Choose, and Make. Inspired by these stages, Leopoldo Leal based his book around the concept and created an experimentation that further explores design's creative process.

Throughout the book's pages, you'll find an amalgamation of designs that experiment with type through different mediums that stick to the colors go black and white with quaint pops of red and yellow. From drawings to ice cream sticks, there is no lacking of creativity. The book isn't formatted in a linear type, so whether you start reading on page one or twelve, you'll be thoroughly inspired.

In John Milton’s Paradise Lost, Pandemonium is the capital of hell, the place where demons have a board meeting in order to discuss their plans. It also means confusion, chaos, and commotion. Such a metaphor can be used to describe the creative process of a graphic designer, whose mind functions as an overflown cauldron filled with interconnected information in a complex network. Contrary to popular belief, ideas are not a result of divine inspiration or orderly and predictable thinking. They come to life due to repetitive practice, effort and experimentation, which are characteristics of the designer’s own repertoire.

The purpose of this book was to understand chance and experimentation inserted in the creative process of graphic design. The book was based on the lines of a practical and theoretical research and consists of reflections from the bibliography on processes of design and creation, interviews with graphic designers and typographic experiments that present, in practice, the creation process, which is unique for each person, since it involves many aspects that will determine the final result. The challenge was to create experiments in typography and design. Drawing typefaces from any materials such as punch cards, bar codes, ice cream sticks, collages, etc. The entire process was registered in more than ten sketchbooks and scrapbooks.

Therefore, the book was organized as a notebook of graphic experiments and experien- ces that can be read in full or leafed through freely. It was based on the eight stages of the creative process described by Robert Keith Sawyer, who has studied creativity for more than twenty years. These stages form the structure of the dissertation and aim to provide clarity and understanding of the whole creative process, which does not occur in a linear way; therefore, the eight stages do not necessarily happen in the order presented in this book. Creative process is formed along with project development as there are always deviations, mistakes, improvisations and surprises which promote its shape.

About the authorLeopoldo Leal holds a Ph.D. in design from FAUUSP. He is a professor for the SENAC graduate program and at EBAC. In over 20 years of experience, he has worked as a designer at Landor, Interbrand, Futurebrand and GAD’Branding. He has received national and international recognition for his dissertation Pandemonium such as the “Museu da Casa Brasileira” Award, also nominated for the Type Directors Club of New York (TDC66), silver medal at Brasil Design Award (2020) and for the 13th Biennial of “ADG” (Brazilian Graphic Design Association). For now, Leopoldo has intensified his research on creative processes in graphic design, lecturing and producing graphic workshops and experiments.

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