‘It’s all in my head’

2 min readJun 18, 2021


How do you judge creative ideas?

Photo by The Creative Exchange on Unsplash
Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. –Scott Adams

Every waking day, I have to make decisions between bad and good creative work.

The decisions are based on some loose definitions on clarity, “being on brief,” and one that evokes action.

Written work is easier to judge. Grammar? Check. Length and format? Check. Does it communicate what you wanted? Check. Will the intended target audience understand it? Check.

Key visuals or artworks are tricky. I admit, I’m a wordsmith. I know little of visual communications.

But with experience, I have developed an eye for a catchy artwork that will match copy.

I do have some criteria in my head.

Visual images must evoke emotions. Together, words and pictures do launch a thousand ships.

Images must tell a story. If they don’t, they are wallpaper. They fall under the category of “looks pleasing, but fails to move you.”

A hard task

Judging creative ideas is hard.

“Take a deep breath and reflect that judging creative work is the single hardest task most marketers ever have to do,” Helen Edwards, a marketer, admits.

It’s both art and science, the left and the right brain.

Science involves data (what makes people click?). Art is from the gut.

Edwards offers three aspects that one has to look for when judging creative ideas: empathy, focus, and surprise.

Empathy: Will creative idea move you?

Focus: Is the message clear and answering what the brief says? Does it address the BIG IDEA?

Surprise: Will it cause goosebumps when you see it? Will it make you pay attention?

Pixar has its own rules in storytelling, for example. Someone made a book about it.

Don't think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It's self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can't try to do things. You simply must do things. –Ray Bradbury




An ex-journalist. Teacher. Dad. Loves Guitar & Books. Writes when inspiration hits.