The biography "Porcelain" by musician Moby is a nice addition to your summer reading list. The book covers the period from when he left home to the eve of the release of his album "Porcelain" that was his major breakthrough.

Many celebrities use ghost authors to write their books. This one is written by himself. The style of the sentences exactly matches those of his social media posts and video interviews.

The book paints a good picture of the prolonged creative struggle you need to go through in order to find your individual style. If you look at his career from a distance this is the picture that I get:

  • Moby got an extensive classical guitar training (not at all mentioned in the book) which his musical foundation
  • Then he got his decade or so to look for his style:
    • DJ-ing, absorbing a huge amount of music
    • Playing around with sequencers, drum machines which were relatively new inventions in the late eighties
    • Because of his low "burn rate" (living in abandoned factories) he could somehow sustain himself without a daytime job, freeing up time for creative experimentation
    • Again lack of financial resources forced him to extract the maximum out of the equipment he had.

My own efforts to get SlideMagic off the ground feel a bit like this. I try to process all those presentations I designed during my decade at McKinsey, and the decade as a professional presentation designer into a useful tool. In V2.0 I am now slowly moving from a pure focus on grid-based design to a generic, minimalist, visual language to express business concepts. Work in progress.