Interview with Mark Sackett

Davin Greenwell, March 29, 2021 at 10:25 PM
Mark has been an award-winning Designer/Director/Producer for 31 years. Founder of Brainfood Creative Programs, Mark is a public speaker and thought leader who helps people live more creative lives by teaching them about what he calls “Left of Center Thinking.” Mark shares his thoughts on Design Currency 2010.

DW: What are you looking forward to most about Design Currency 2010?

MS: To having an intelligent and passionate conversation about how we all need to do better right now and work together, and finally understand that this business is about relationship, collaboration, ideas and pure creativity, and less about the look and stylists! We need to be results specialists. Creativity for creativity sake alone is great for a wall hanging or a gallery but we should all make things look good.  For me how it works, that's what really matters.

DW: What does the conference theme “Design Currency” mean to you?

MS: A wish to be validated as to how effective we really are in the wheels of commerce and our failure to do just that! My initial reaction to this theme was how can we be the new currency if we can't as designers figure out how to build the Federal Reserve Bank?  By this I mean, we have failed as designers to build value for design and make it tangible and measurable for others! If you don't agree tell me how you can explain to someone outside of our profession exacly what you do, and what tangible value you provide.

DW: If design was currency, who would have the most? Who would have the least?

MS: Would and Should are very different concepts.  If in fact design was currency, it would have tangible value and the entire world would be better off, it would be overflowing everywhere impacting life at every level.  Everyone would be working harder for more, better and more effective results that were design based.  Our governments would have a secretary of the arts or a design commerce minister. And design, branding, creativity would be given equal value in education and within and throughout our lives.

But personally for me, we need to stop defining ourselves as designers. In my opinion design is a limiting word. Or perhaps we have allowed it to limit our thinking. Most designers I know are solid thinkers but limit their creative efforts to design rather than expanding their efforts to critical thinking. At the end of the day, those who should have the most are those who embrace this kind of thinking. No one should have the least, it should permeate everything we are and everyone should have more than they need.

DW: What criteria do you use to evaluate design?

MS: Does it move me in some way to want, need, hunger for or desire more.  And at the very basic level, does it communicate, function or engage me. Good design, in my opinion is the foundation of messages and a cog in the wheels of commerce.  We as designers can have great impact on how those wheels move.  But with us or without us they will move, so we must remove our arrogance and specialness and work together to make the greatest impact with what it is we excel at.


Mark Sackett will be speaking at Design Currency 2010. To learn more about him, see Mark Sackett's speaker page.

Posted In:Interviews