Designers have much to learn from jazz. I have portraits of three great jazz musicians in my office and they inspire me everyday. (I found these portraits in a corner of the room that stores the 3M art collection) 

  1. Miles Davis, represents innovation and the ability to disrupt and reinvent oneself. He revolutionised his own music, not once, but several times. 
  2. Sarah Vaughan is one of the best storytellers of our time. 
  3. Art Blakey is all about getting the timing right. 

Improvisation on a base melody, is central to jazz and that’s another important takeaway for designers.

My recommendation is this:

Listen to and appreciate jazz.  It will enrich your life and work

Here’s a playlist of my favourite albums to get you started 

  • Esperanza Spalding – Junjo 
  • Gary Burton – Reunion 
  • Metheny Mehldau – Quartet 
  • Biréli Lagrène – Electric Side 
  • Metro – Live at the A-Trane 
Eric Quint, Vice President, Chief Brand and Design Officer, 3M is a musician himself and recommends that all creative people try listening to jazz