How Yoga will destroy your Design Career: Christoph Niemann on Happiness, Work and Creativity

In this inspiring, charming and funny talk from the Creative Mornings monthly breakfast lecture series, illustrator Christoph Niemann dances across everything from finding happiness at work to what it takes to have a good idea to the myth of “talent” to how to overcome writer’s block.

See more of Christoph’s brilliant work on his site or his NYT blog Abstract City.  

Via Brain Pickings

Hans Rosling on Global Population Growth

Speaking of Hans Rosling, the master of presenting macro economical data in an entertaining and truly mindset-changing way recently talked about the world population growth at TED in Cannes. In this talk, he does not only present his data digitally using his cool Gapminder software, but also mixes in some analog visualization technique as well. This new “analog teaching technology” he picked up from Ikea, he says.

Be sure to also take a look at his past presentations at TED which are definitely worth watching:
Hans Rosling: Asia’s rise — how and when (2009)
Hans Rosling: Let my dataset change your mindset (2009)
Hans Rosling on HIV: New facts and stunning data visuals (2009)
Hans Rosling’s new insights on poverty (2007)
Hans Rosling shows the best stats you’ve ever seen (2006)

Why can’t Van Gogh straighten up his bedroom – Ursus Wehrli tidies up art

If you’ve ever wondered why art has to be so messy and if there is no way to improve those untidy paintings of masters such as Van Gogh, Paul Klee, Joan Miró or Jackson Pollock, watch this TED talk of comedian and cabaret artist Ursus Wehrli.

You can buy his English book “Tidying Up Art” at respectively the German original “Kunst aufräumen” at

David McCandless on the Beauty of Data Visualization

In this TED talk by David McCandless, he shows and explains examples, that turn complex data sets (like worldwide military spending, media buzz, Facebook status updates) into beautiful, simple diagrams that tease out unseen patterns and connections. Good Data Visualization, he suggests, is the best ways to compress knowledge and it may just change the way we see the world. Quoting Hans Rosling, “Let my dataset change your mindset”.

For more examples of data visualization visit David’s website or buy his book “Information is Beautiful” at 

John Cleese on Creativity

Below is a 10-minute video excerpt from a presentation by John Cleese expressing his ideas on creativity.

Among other thoughts, he emphasizes that creativity requires a quiet mind and we have to create an “oasis” with boundaries of space and time where we are free of interruptions and can have a safe atmosphere for creative ideas and insights.

We don’t know where we get our ideas from. We do know that we do not get them from our laptops.

If you are interested in the topic be sure to read Garr Reynolds‘ reflection on this topic at presentation-zen.

What really motivates us

This cleverly illustrated excerpt from Dan Pink’s talk at the RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce) gives you astonishing insights in what really motivates us and why monetary incentives are often counterproductive.

If you’re interested in the topic, be sure to check out Dan’s new book “Drive” on (or

You can also watch Dan’s full 40-minutes talk or other illustrated RSA talks.