“Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.” ~Author Unkown
This advice can be tricky to articulate. I haven’t been sure about how to blog about this advice. I’ve been letting it stew in my mind for over a week now – waiting for the muse to inspire me. Obviously, I don’t want to encourage anyone to do anything illegal, dangerous or harmful. Besides, that’s really not what this advice is about. This is really suggestive of thinking outside of the box in order to gain spectacular results.
Over the weekend, I had a nice long coffee break at LuLu’s Beehive with the beautiful actress, writer, director Monique Carmona. She was telling me about a book of monologues that she has written. It’s specifically written for the feminine actresses. She’s looking forward to publishing it for public consumption. For those of you who don’t know Monique, she is a bit of a wild card (her own words) and is full of vibrant energy. Nothing about her is stuffy, plain or boring.
She’s telling me about her process for coming up with a book cover. This included research by looking at other monologue books similar to her own that are already being sold. What the rules told her was that less was more. Simple was sophisticated. Plain was pure. Based on her findings, she created a book cover that was nothing more than a white cover with a black title in a common font. She showed me an example book that she had printed out for proofing — it was not interesting at all. There wasn’t anything enticing about the book, in my opinion.
Then she told me how it just didn’t feel right for her. She decided to hire the graphic designer, Daria Nakelska and together they created a gorgeous book cover design that was full of fiery charm and beautiful imagery. Her new cover had a renaissance outline of a woman’s face, surrounded by an art nouveau inspired ring of intricate line art. The title “Women On The Edge” was set a bit off-kilter. Everything about this book cover made me want to pick it up.
What Monique did was a process of discovery. By first looking at what the rules were for creating a monologue book cover design, she was able to create a foundation. Then, she listened to her instincts and bent, twisted and broke those defining rules. She is left with a masterpiece that accurately reflects her personality, of which I’m sure is illustrated throughout the book in her writing.
There are several inventions and masterpieces created by breaking the rules. Things stand out when they break free from the template. When have you made a great discovery after breaking or bending the rules? I’d love to hear about it here or over on the Facebook fan page.