Quotes on…

Quotes on…

Christopher Murphy · 5 August, 2020

Design × Business × Life

I've been gathering these quotes for over a decade. There's so much wisdom in the words of others. In addition to be useful for teaching (and Twitter), they're also useful for occasional check-ins for life.

I've ordered them by the three themes of The School of Design: design × business × life. I'm adding as I organise my files because I have hundreds of these stored in Simplenote and Bear. Check back often.


"The details are not the details; they make the product."

—Charles and Ray Eames

“Design has become the cover for unnecessary consumption.”

—Peter Saville

“The simplest way to achieve simplicity is through thoughtful reduction.”

—John Maeda

“There is no design without discipline. There is no discipline without intelligence.”

—Massimo Vignelli

“People ignore design that ignores people.”

—Frank Chimero

“A designer is a planner with an aesthetic sense.”

—Bruno Munari

“A common mistake when trying to design something completely foolproof is underestimating the ingenuity of complete fools.”

—Douglas Adams

“Design is so simple, that’s why it is so complicated.”

—Paul Rand

“Design is so critical it should be on the agenda of every meeting in every single department.”

—Tom Peters

“To see takes time.”

—Georgia O’Keeffe

“The best way to have a good idea is to have lots of ideas.”

—Linus Pauling

“The structure of ideas is never sequential; and indeed, our thought processes are not very sequential either.” —Ted Nelson


“The best way to predict your future is to create it.”

—Peter Drucker

“Never delegate understanding.”

—Charles and Ray Eames

“Tradition is an experiment that has worked.”

—Émile Peynaud

“If it ain’t broke. Break it.”

—Tom Peters

“There is a great satisfaction in building good tools for other people to use.”

—Freeman Dyson

“What's measured improves.”

—Peter Drucker

“Strategy is a commodity, execution is an art.”

—Peter Drucker


“You are under no obligation to remain the same person you were a year ago, a month ago, or even a day ago. You are here to create yourself, continuously.”

—Richard Feynman

“Acknowledging what you don’t know is the dawning of wisdom.” —Charlie Munger

“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.”


“The universe is made of stories, not of atoms.”

—Muriel Rukeyser

“The perfect is the enemy of the good.”


“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

—Thomas Edison

“Keep your dreams vivid, or they’ll get lost along the way.”

—Tana French

“The easy, conversational tone of good writing comes only on the eighth rewrite.”

—Paul Graham

“There are three rules for writing. Unfortunately, no one can agree what they are.”

—Somerset Maugham

“Education is not the answer to the question. Education is the means to the answer to all questions.”

—William Allin

“Luck favours the prepared.”

—Edna Mode

“Never stand still. If you stand still, you get lost, because someone else is always moving.”

—Armin Vit

The compounding effect of trying to get better by 1% a day is huge. Compounded it is 3,800% per year. That’s 40 times better than where you started in just one year. —David Hieatt (?)