Inspirational Pursuits: What Makes Us Tick


Whether it comes from an aspect of your work or from your daily life, remaining inspired is the key to producing great results for clients across the board. We Almanacers take our inspirations very seriously, often swapping book recommendations, cool websites, brands we love, industry news, and funny things we find on the internet on a daily basis.

Here are some of our team’s most current inspirations and recommendations we turn to when we need a creative boost. Read on!

Founding Partner + Strategist

“Lately I have been reading up on the Ripple Effect Theory, which states that an outward flow of energy begins from a central point as the result of a single action. As a marketer of course this idea intrigues me, and I’ve only got to look to social media (today’s “word of mouth”) to see how one person’s thoughts and ideas can quickly spread. But even more as a human being, I’m drawn to this idea. 2017 is the year when I want to be mindful of the effects of my attitudes, words and actions on everyone I come into contact with: family, clients, co-workers, friends, people at the grocery store. I’ll be looking for ways I can be a central point for positive outflows of energy into this world.”

Recommended web read –Leadership and the Ripple Effect” by Roxi Bahar Hewertson

Senior Designer

“To me, the most desired things are simple, clever and inspire curiosity. I try and take this approach in all aspects of my designed life…because every aspect is designed. Curiosity sets us up for more “ah-ha” moments. Those moments are what I love creating.”


Founding Partner + Creative Director

“The way clients and agencies work together is changing. The problems we’re all solving are more complex and the best solutions come from a collaborative, embedded approach that brings both teams together. Almanac has always been highly collaborative, but over the last couple of years we’ve been working to incorporate more group workshops and facilitation, user testing, design sprints, and other lessons pulled from agile software development workflows. The result is fewer assumptions, better work and happier teams, and that’s what I’m most inspired about as we look ahead at 2017.”

Book recommendation – Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days” by Jake Knapp with John Zeratsky and Braden Kowitz

Account Manager

“I’m currently reading ‘The Body Book’ which is the first on my list for 2017. In order for me to feel like I’m making progress in my personal and professional life, I need to feel in tune with my own body’s health and wellbeing. The awareness that comes along with that helps you see the improvements that are possible around you. Thinking outside of the box and not settling for something “just because” can open endless doors.”

Book recommendation:The Body Book” by Cameron Diaz


“I think in this day and age, clients view graphic design as something that is important but at times don’t see the broader picture of its influence. Design should be more than communicating an idea. Design creates a dialogue for collaboration, helping to discover new alternatives and effective outcomes to better the problem trying to be solved.”

Recommended web read – Brain Pickings: “Legendary Physicist David Bohm on the Paradox of Communication, the Crucial Difference Between Discussion and Dialogue, and What Is Keeping Us from Listening to One Another 

Illustration by Natalie Johnson

Account Manager

“I am constantly inspired by the mindset of “bad yogi”—to be mindful and intentional in my work and in everyday life, but without forgetting to laugh and reflect on mistakes and failures and not take anything too seriously. I receive Erin’s newsletters, and there’s usually always something in the blog I can learn from, even if I don’t always find time to read it. Not to mention it’s just really inspiring to see a young woman spearhead a movement that is close to my heart.”

Recommended web read – Bad Yogi Blog by Erin Motz


“I’m inspired by Scott Hansen, aka Tycho or ISO50. His art and music stems from simplicity. That simplicity is a reflection of my own aspirations, from design to home restoration. The ISO50 blog is also a great way to discover new music with context, rather than a daily mix prepared by Spotify.”

Album recommendation – Tycho: Epoch

Photo courtesy of Tycho


“With the storytelling aspect of branding and marketing becoming more and more important, it inspires me to read emotionally driven writing–like poetry–to stay creative, expand my vocabulary, and see how other writers are creating an emotional connection to the work. I recently signed up to receive a poem-a-day from and it’s one small thing I can read each day to reinvigarate my passion for words.”

Book recommendation –The Anatomy of Being” by Shinji Moon

Senior Designer

“I heard Hulse & Durrell speak at the Brand New Conference this summer about the herculean task of digitizing more than a century of Olympic design and branding housed at the Olympic Heritage Collection. This already daunting task became much more challenging as they discovered that they’d need to verify the original design, colors, mascots through the decades. But as it all came together, they were able to show how Olympic design at its best was a beacon to the whole world, and an inspiration to the host country. Designs like Berlin ’36 or Tokyo ’64 did more than celebrate the host of the games: they were a visual turning point for Germany and Japan moving away from a history of war.

I’ve been thinking back to this talk a lot when I’m deep in the minutiae of a project, and it helps me remember the larger impact that great design can have to unify and give hope to people.”

Recommended web read – Olympic Heritage Collection Global Design Leadership” by Hulse & Durrell

Photo courtesy of Hulse & Durrell, Olympic Heritage Collection
Photo courtesy of Hulse & Durrell, Olympic Heritage Collection