Rilla Alexander: Without the Doing, Dreaming is Useless

We all have an idea we've been meaning to execute on, but how can we really make it happen? In this highly original, all-ages talk at the 99 Conference, illustrator Rilla Alexander walks us through this classic creative struggle by sharing the story of Sozi - an adorable character who walks us through the arc of an idea. She daydreams, she procrastinates, she sets deadlines, she gets tempted by new ideas, she buckles down and works hard - and finally - she realizes "Her Idea."

1:15 - The start of an idea
1:45 - "I can't work with anything hanging over my head…"
2:54 - "Finally. I put pencil to paper. ..and Im confronted by the mediocrity of my idea"
4:10 - What about all those other ideas?
5:03 - Five years pass…
5:30 - "I begin to hate my idea, its a huge weight of unfulfilled expectations"
6:05 - "I give up. But then, it happened…"
6:50 - I love this idea again
7:10 - Deadlines force me to have realistic expectations, "Instead of focusing on how wonderful it is, I focus on getting it done"
8:00 - How to execute your idea
8:41 - Dreaming up ideas is fun, but that's only the tip of the iceberg
9:29 - Without the doing the dreaming is useless
9:55 - Set boundaries
10:11 - Let the idea take control
10:55 - Theres always another idea that looks better. But thats because I'm not working on it. I haven't seen its flaws and failures
11:25 - Don't give up. Don't cripple it with self-doubt
12:09 - It's a lot of work, but much more satisfying than procrastinating
12:30 - Rila reads "Her Idea"

About Rilla Alexander

Rilla Alexander is an Australian-born Berlin-based designer and illustrator. Her cast of creatures dance across Madrid's Museo del Prado's ceramics and stationery products, populate Swiss Credit Cards for Cornér Bank and sleep on the walls of Hotel Fox in Copenhagen (where she replaced the bed with a tent).

As a member of design collective Rinzen, she has published several books exploring the creative process. The felt-covered book Neighbourhood featured the collaborative efforts of over 30 artists reworking and remaking hand-made toys in a sequence that stretched across the world.

Her all-ages picture book, Her Idea, was launched with an exhibition at Colette in Paris — and tells the tale of her alter-ego Sozi and her quest to make ideas happen.

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