Paul Rand – arguably one of the greatest graphic designers of the century, once gave the legendary Steve Jobs an answer to a question about a logo that Steve wanted Paul to design for his company, NeXT.
In an 1993 interview, Steve Jobs tells of his encounter with working with Paul Rand, the famous graphic designer who worked with companies such as Ford, American Express and IBM to mention but a few.
While being interviewed Steve gives us some insight into what it was like to work with Paul Rand. When asked about what it was like to work with Paul, Steve gave an amazing answer that I believe will benefit all creatives everywhere.
“I asked him if he would come up with some options.”
“And he said, no.”
“I will solve your problem for you.”
“And you will pay me.”
“You don’t have to use the solution.”
“If you want options, go talk to other people.”
“But I will solve your problem for you, the best way I know how.”
“Use it or not, that’s up to you. You’re the client.”
“But you pay me.”
Steve Jobs: “There was a clarity about the relationship that was refreshing.”
“Paul was one of the most professional people, I have ever worked with.”
It is not about mimicking someone else. Rather, solve the clients problem. The best way YOU know how.
Make no mistake. This is not a ticket to an easy life or career. Paul Rand was a deep thinker and writer. He worked hard, was self aware, confident and was comfortable being himself.
You and I can learn a lot from, Paul.