Keeping Your Product Design Sharp in 10 Quotes

The work of the product designer is never what it seems. Study widely and relentlessly. Here, photographers, philosophers, generals, designers, architects and musicians help keep us on track.

“There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept.”
 — Ansel Adams
“Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity.”
 — Simone Weil
“Simplicity is not the goal. It is the by-product of a good idea and modest expectations.”
 — Paul Rand
“So in war, the way is to avoid what is strong, and strike at what is weak.”
 — Sun Tzu in The Art Of War
“Everything excellent is as difficult as it is rare.”
 — Baruch Spinoza in Ethics
“I prefer drawing to talking. Drawing is faster, and leaves less room for lies.”
 — Le Corbusier
“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”
 — Aristotle
“Ethics and aesthetics are one.”
 — Ludwig Wittgenstein
“I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.”
 — John Cage
“Until we know the assumptions in which we are drenched, we cannot know ourselves.”
 — Adrienne Rich