One of the things I’ve always tried to do on this blog is talk about things which inspire me, mostly in my design work. It’s not always happened as I’ve wanted it to, but recently I’ve been noticing things a little more and seeing that it’s not just design work that inspires. So this post will, hopefully, be one of several which talk about something that has inspired me.
One thing that hasn’t come out much on my blog, is that I like to cook. My repertoire might be a little small, but I enjoy it and I’m always looking for something new to try. Recently I bought Jamie Oliver’s new book Jamie At Home and it’s inspired me to try a few new dishes. I wanted to bring it to your attention for a few reasons. One, it’s inspired me to cook through it’s easy, simple yet tasty dishes; and two, I really like the graphics of the book, it’s inspired me in my work as well as my cooking.
Let’s get started with the kitchen. I guess, I need to own up now, it’s not just the book that has inspired me but also the TV shows that accompany it. I know I wouldn’t have bought the book without them, the two are tied together very well, and Jamie’s enthusiasm is nothing short of infectious.
What I like most about the book is its non-threatening approach. The recipes aren’t your usual list of instructions, but are instead written in a nice understandable paragraph that, if you need, can be broken down to direct instructions. It makes the whole process of cooking a meal a lot less intimidating and gives the feeling of freedom. Instead of feeling like you need to follow each step rigidly, there is more a feeling that you can follow the paragraph and if you go slightly off it doesn’t matter too much.
Ultimately it gives me the feeling that I am creating as opposed to copying. It’s this which supplies, spurs, sparks, give it whatever S word you want, the inspiration.
The book hasn’t just inspired me in the kitchen. It’s also inspired me at the Mac with my design work. I like the graphics in the book, they give that organic and rustic feel which I guess typifies Jamie in his approach to food.
I like the simplicity of the drawn images which introduce each section of the book, and the texture given to the large type adds to the rustic hand-made feel. The general feel of the whole book enhances that feeling of creativity that is generated when cooking the recipes. This is partly why I found the book inspiring. My design work, as you can see from this place, focuses on simplicity to generate the right clean cut and honest feeling. Something which I feel comes out in this book from Jamie. The subtlety of everything in the finish just enhances it all. From the textured material on the cover, to the spot UV on the photo of Jamie, it all enhances the hands-on feeling of cooking.