Creative Processing with Joseph Gordon-Levitt

By HITRECORD & Cadence13

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Category: Arts

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Subscribers: 353
Reviews: 2

Rik Villanueva
 Aug 20, 2019
Wonderful dive into the creative process.

Matthew Christensen
 Jul 25, 2019
This is brand new, but I already want to give it 5 stars because I'm familiar with Joseph Gordon Leavitt's boss status. Can't wait!


On his new ten-episode series, Joseph Gordon-Levitt will get into the nitty-gritty of how a wide variety of creative people do what they do. Listeners’ questions will inspire conversations between Gordon-Levitt and a range of creative guests, from Hollywood notables like Rian Johnson and Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg, to behind-the-scenes heavyweights like casting director Mary Vernieu, and from political visual artist Shepard Fairey to indie sonic songstress, Yuka Honda, and more.

Episode Date
MacGyver, Media, & Merchandise / Tony Hsieh, CEO & Internet Entrepreneur
“I love being entrepreneurial because it’s really just about getting to play MacGyver, but for business.” -Tony Hsieh Welcome to a very special episode of CREATIVE PROCESSING! This episode was recorded live in collaboration with Talkhouse Podcast at the Life Is Beautiful Music and Arts Festival in Las Vegas, Nevada. For this episode, Joe sat down with the CEO of Zappos, Tony Hsieh, where they took a deep dive into discussing the parallels of artistic and entrepreneurial creativity, and how technology will shape the future of collaboration.   As we start to develop the future of CREATIVE PROCESSING, we would love to hear your thoughts on Season 1! What were your favorite moments? What should we change? What should we keep? Let us know! Send us your thoughts on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram using the #creativeprocessing, or via email at Subscribe for updates on future episodes of CREATIVE PROCESSING. Thank you for listening!
Feb 20, 2020
Pushing Boundaries & Yourself / Jessica Alba, Actress and Entrepreneur
“You have to push yourself outside of your comfort zone. You have to allow yourself to fail. Once you get over the fear of failure, then you will start to find where your happiness lies, and if ‘good enough’ is sufficient or not.” - Jessica Alba This is the last episode of the season! I've really enjoyed the podcast medium, and I appreciate the audience that this show has gathered, so thank you for listening. The guest this week is Jessica Alba. She’s an incredibly successful actress and entrepreneur. She co-founded The Honest Company, which has not only been extremely successful and lucrative, but also something that’s positive. She’s acted in a number of movies including Honey, Into the Blue, Good Luck Chuck, Fantastic Four, and Sin City (where we first got to know each other). She’s incredibly talented, smart, and just such a cool person. She continues to push herself beyond her limits, which I think is what makes her the perfect guest to answer this week’s question from Rochelle Connery from Anchorage, Alaska.  Rochelle asked, “Any hints on how to push myself to achieve more than just ‘good enough?’” Jessica is clearly someone who continues to push boundaries. We had a great conversation about finding equilibrium and balance amongst pressure and stress, getting over the fear of failure, how to battle insecurity, using boundaries to expand your creativity, and how Jessica has used stereotypes and low expectations to drive herself and empower others.   Even though this is the last episode, you can ask a question or continue the conversation on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram using the #creativeprocessing. And, if you’re feeling inspired, check out, where we’re making art about some of the topics we discussed in these episodes. Subscribe for updates on future episodes of CREATIVE PROCESSING. Thanks for listening! ABOUT THE GUEST: Jessica Alba, Founder of The Honest Company, is a globally recognized business leader, entrepreneur, advocate, actress and New York Times bestselling author. The Honest Company® is a mission-driven company dedicated to empowering people to live happy, healthy lives by providing thoughtfully formulated, safe and effective baby, personal care and beauty products. In 2013 Jessica authored the New York Times bestselling book, The Honest Life, a practical guide for parents to create a safe and healthy life for their families. Jessica has appeared on the cover of Forbes’ “Self-Made Women” issue and was among the top twenty of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business, one of CNBC’s Next List of Rebels, Leaders and Innovators, and one of Fortune’s 10 Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs.   SELECTED LINKS: Connect with Jessica: -Instagram: @jessicaalba -Twitter: @jessicalba -Facebook: @JessicaAlba Movies Mentioned: -Honey (2003) -Into the Blue (2005) -Good Luck Chuck (2007) -Fantastic Four (2005) -Sin City (2005) -Jaws (1975) -Gumby (1995) TV Shows Mentioned: -3rd Rock from the Sun (NBC, 1996-2001) -Fleabag (BBC, 2016-2019) -Saturday Night Live (NBC, 1975- ) People Mentioned: -Rian Johnson (Filmmaker) -Cash Warren (Producer) -Tom Hanks (Actor)  -John Lithgow (Actor) -Kristen Johnston (Actress) -French Stewart (Actor) -Jane Curtin (Actress) -James Cameron (Filmmaker)  -Steven Spielberg (Filmmaker)  -Lorne Michaels (Producer)  -Jennifer Lopez (Actress/Singer) Philosophies/Theories Mentioned: -80/20 Rule -Wabi Sabi  -Myers-Briggs Test (TAKE IT HERE) -Nature v. Nurture (Also mentioned in Ep. 5 Madisen Ward & The Mama Bear and Ep. 6 Liv Boeree)
Oct 22, 2019
Career & Contacts / Mary Vernieu, Casting Director
Oct 15, 2019
Tech & Humanity / Jaron Lanier, Computer Scientist, Writer, & Musician
“Making things ‘easy’ always has a downside...To pretend that you can make something easy without losing some of your focus and discipline is always a fallacy. There's always going to be a tradeoff.” -Jaron Lanier

This week’s guest is Jaron Lanier, who I’ve been fortunate to become friends with over the last number of years. He’s a technologist, computer scientist, musician, writer, and artist who is perhaps most well known for being one of the pioneers of virtual reality. My first exposure to Jaron was through his books, which I highly recommend you check out. I’ve listed where you can find them in the bottom of the description. Jaron is incredibly funny and just an extraordinary conversationalist, who I honestly could have talked with for days. His combination of an incredibly creative mind with a technological, computer-scientist mind made him perfect to answer this week’s question from Chrissy Regler from Dorset, England.

Chrissy asked, “How do you feel the digital era has changed our creative process?” Jaron and I talked about the influence digital tools have had on creativity, how technology has impacted moviemaking, the effect that algorithms have had on anxiety and artistic engagement, and wrapped it all up with whether its best to believe things or doubt things.

If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.



A Renaissance Man for the 21st century, Jaron Lanier is a computer scientist, composer, artist, and author who writes on numerous topics, including high-technology business, the social impact of technology, the philosophy of consciousness and information, Internet politics, and the future of humanism. Jaron Lanier has been on the cusp of technological innovation from its infancy to the present. A pioneer in virtual reality (a term he coined), Lanier founded VPL Research, the first company to sell VR products, and led teams originating VR applications for medicine, design, and numerous other fields. He is currently the “octopus” (which stands for Office of the Chief Technology Officer Prime Unifying Scientist) at Microsoft.  In 2018, Lanier was named one of the 25 most influential people in the previous 25 years of tech history by Wired Magazine. He’s also been named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine, top one hundred public intellectuals in the world by Foreign Policy magazine, top 50 World Thinkers by Prospect magazine, and one of history’s 300 or so greatest inventors in the Encyclopedia Britannica. In 2009 Jaron Lanier received a Lifetime Career Award from the IEEE, the preeminent international engineering society.



Books by Jaron Lanier:
  • You Are Not A Gadget
  • Who Owns The Future
  • Dawn of the New Everything: Encounters with Reality and Virtual Reality
  • Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now
Other Books Mentions: 
  • Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke
People Mentioned:
  • Stanley Kubrik (Director)
  • Howard Hawks (Director)
  • Gene Kelly (Director)
  • B.F. Skinner (Psychologist)
  • Steve Jobs (Co-Founder of Apple)
  • Daniel Kottke (One of Apple’s First Employees)
  • Andy Herzfeld (Computer Scientist)
  • Abraham Maslow (Psychologist)
  • Pierce Brosnan (Actor)
  • M. (Computer Scientist) 
Movies Mentions: 
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
  • A Clockwork Orange (1971) 
  • The Lawnmower Man (1992)
Other Mentions: 
  • Oud (Musical Instrument)
  • Lute (Musical Instrument)
  • Fight or Flight Response 
  • MIDI (Digital Interface) 
  • Tibetan Throat Singing
  • GarageBand (Software) 
  • Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs  
  • Bolsheviks (Political Party)
  • Stalinists (Political Party)
  • Google Translate
  • Bing Translate
  • iPod
  • Burning Man
Oct 08, 2019
Love & The Paycheck / Omid Memar, Up-and-Coming Actor
“When you're an artist, it's not a button you can push on or off. You're always an actor. I sleep as an actor. I wake up as an actor.... I always think about art and creativity, and that's all I want to do.” -Omid Memar

This week’s guest is Omid Memar. He’s a fantastic actor who I recently was able to work with for an upcoming movie called 7500 (we actually recorded this episode at the movie’s premiere in Switzerland). Omid’s acting is incredibly honest and real and heartbreaking and human. He also comes from a very culturally-rich background— he’s from an Iranian family, grew up in Austria, moved to Munich, and graduated from a French school. He’s a young guy that’s really just getting started in his career, so I thought he would be perfect to answer this week’s question from Megan Colbert in Springfield, New York. 

Megan asked, “How do you balance the inner need to create with the practical need to bring in a paycheck?” Omid and I talk about what it’s like to be up-and-coming in the industry, and how the artistry and creativity in acting is often overshadowed by the idea of ‘celebrity’. We also talk about the influence of cultural identity when selecting roles, the creative impact that music has had on each of us, and we top it all off with a touching conversation about our grandmothers. 

If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.


Omid Memar is a twenty-year old Iranian actor, who grew up in Vienna before moving to Munich with his family in 2008 where Omid graduated in a French school with a dual-degree in German and French. Omid landed his first acting role at 14 in the German film The Famous Five 4, based on the book series by Enid Blyton. Omid also starred in the Austrian TV Mini-Series M - A City Hunts a Murderer, and the short film Invention of Trust where he was honored with Gold in the Student Academy Awards in 2016. Omid stars alongside Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the movie 7500, which will be released on Amazon early next year. 



Connect with Omid:- Instagram: @midopersian

People Mentioned:
- Passar Hariky (Actor)
- Patrick Vollrath (Director)
- Sebastian Fitz (Omid’s Acting Teacher)

Movies Mentions:
- The Famous Five 4 (2015)
- Angels In The Outfield (1994)

Other Mentions:
- Locarno Film Festival
- Iran-Iraq War (Sep. 22, 1980- Aug. 20, 1988)
- Box Studio in Locarno, Switzerland 
Oct 01, 2019
Analytics & Intuition / Liv Boeree, Professional Poker Player
“A lot of people often think of rationality as actually about removing your emotions entirely, but I disagree with that because emotions are what ultimately make us human...To be truly rational, we have to learn to work with our emotions— not completely eradicate them.’” -Liv Boeree

My guest this week is Liv Boeree— a magnificent thinker, writer, and speaker. Liv is one of the most successful professional poker players of all time (she is the only woman in history to win both the World Series of Poker and European Poker Tour Championships). On top of all that, she also just happens to have a degree in astrophysics. She’s an all around fantastic person to have a conversation with, and was particularly great at answering this week’s question from Kent Wilson from Nashville, Tennessee.

Kent asked, “When does data-backed decision making begin to have a negative impact on the creative process?” Liv and I get into a great discussion on what constitutes analytical thinking, what the difference is between science and art, and how to listen to your intuition and balance that with data, and logic with reason. So much of creativity nowadays is further and further integrated with data and analytics, and Liv has some great insight on when data is valuable and when you should just go with your gut. 

If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019. 



Liv Boeree is one of the UK’s most successful poker players winning both a European Poker Tour and World Series of Poker championship title during her professional career. Before poker she studied Astrophysics, she now focuses her time as a TV host and YouTuber specialising in science, futurism and rationality. She also gives seminars on decision strategy and recently spoke at the annual TED conference about the application of poker thinking to everyday life.
In 2014 she co-founded Raising for Effective Giving (REG), a non-profit that promotes a scientific, evidence-based approach to philanthropy known as effective altruism. To date, REG has raised over $11,000,000 for a handful of the most globally impactful and cost-effective charities.



Connect with Liv:
- Twitter: @Liv_Boeree
- Instagram: @Liv_Boeree
YouTube Channel
- Raise for Effective Giving

Theories Mentioned:
- Game Theory
- Scientific Method
- Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
- Nash Equilibrium

Movies Mentioned:
- A Beautiful Mind (2001)

People Mentioned:
- Donald Hoffman (Psychologist / Author)
- Shepard Fairey (Artist / Propagandist)
- John Nash (Mathematician)

Other Mentions:
- Effective Altruism 
- Brexit
- Burning Man
- World Series of Poker
- European Poker Tour Champions
Sep 24, 2019
Family & Folk Music / Madisen Ward and The Mama Bear, Mother-And-Son Folk Band
“There’s times before my mom and I are about to go onstage to play together, and maybe we just argued right before going on. But there’s something about that moment... where I give her a kiss on the cheek and say, ‘Hey, this started with you and me. Let’s go out there and do this.’” -Madisen Ward

My guests this week are Madisen and Ruth Ward, who together are known as the mother-and-son folk band Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear. They’ve appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman, NPR’s Tiny Desk Series, and recently released a brand new album called Started With A Family (if you haven’t heard their music yet, I highly suggest you take a listen). 

For this episode, Madisen, Ruth and I tackled a question from Paige Elson from Stockton, California. Paige asked, “What are the benefits and setbacks of working creatively with family?” I’ve always been curious to know how family fits into creativity. Where does creativity come from? Do you get it from your parent’s genes or from the upbringing they provided? Madisen and Ruth brought such an interesting perspective to this question. We talked about how Ruth’s career transformed after she became a mom, how writing and performing music is different when collaborating with family members, what role music played in the Ward household, and we topped it all off with a question about a crab’s perspective.

If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.



Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear consists of Madisen Ward and Ruth Ward. They are a modern soulful/folk music duo from Independence, Mo. The band's debut album Skeleton Crew, produced by Jim Abbiss, known for his award-winning work with Arctic Monkeys and Adele, captures Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear in their most natural setting. The two tracked most of the tracks live, sitting across from one another in the recording studio. They didn't use a click track. With help from a handful of session musicians, the two Wards captured the sound they'd been making since those coffeeshop days. 



Connect with Madisen and Ruth:
-Twitter: @MadisenWardMB
-Instagram: @MadisenWardMB
-Facebook: Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear
YouTube Channel (One For the Record Series)

Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear Music Mentioned:
-Started With A Family (2019)
-Skeleton Crew (2015)
-"Dead Daffodils"
-"Undertaker and Juniper"

MadisenMusic Music Mentioned:
-“Skip and the Turtle”
“Weep for the King”
“Big Bad Wolfblood”

Other Music Mentioned:
-Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers & Bastards by Tom Waits
-“Old Man” by Neil Young
-“Clown’s Lament”by @Metaphorest on HITRECORD
-Pink Moon by Nick Drake

People Mentioned:
-Isiah Whitlock Jr. (Actor and Ruth’s Brother)
Tom Waits (Singer-Songwriter)
-Tracy Chapman (Singer-Songwriter)
-Mark Knopfler (Singer-Songwriter)
-Bob Dylan (Singer-Songwriter)
-The Osmonds (Family Music Group)
-Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Composer)
-The White Stripes (Musical Group)
-Wu-Tang Clan (Hip Hop Group)

TV Shows Mentioned:
-The Wire (2002-2008)
-MacGyver (1985-1992)
Sep 17, 2019
TED TALK / How craving attention makes you less creative
For this episode, I’m going to do something a little different. I recently did a TED Talk, and there was something really distinct and special about it. I’m pretty used to performing on stage in front of people as a character or for a show, but it felt different to be on stage delivering in-depth thoughts of my own about an idea that’s important to me.

I’m putting this TED Talk on my podcast because it’s about how the creative process can be affected by the attention-driven model of big tech companies, and how you can feel a difference when you try to pay attention vs. get attention.

We’ll be back next week with more episodes of CREATIVE PROCESSING. I hope you enjoy. For more TED Talks, subscribe to the podcast TED Talks Daily, where they post a new idea every day. It’s available anywhere you listen to podcasts. Thanks!
Sep 12, 2019
Collaboration & Friendship / Seth Rogen + Evan Goldberg, Comedy Duo
“At the end of the day, I’d rather make stuff period than make stuff how I want to make stuff. And specific to us, I’d rather make stuff together even than stuff alone.” -Evan Goldberg

My guests this week are the comedy duo Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. You've probably heard of their movies Pineapple Express, This Is The End, Neighbors, Superbad, Sausage Party, and most recently Good Boys. They’ve also ventured into the entrepreneurial space with their own cannabis brand, Houseplant. I’ve known these guys are a while, and have had the pleasure of working with them on 50/50 and The Night Before. Seth and Evan are unique in that they do a vast majority of their creative work as a duo. Because of this, I thought they would make the perfect pair for this week’s question.

For this episode, Seth, Evan and I discussed a question from Pretince Martin Southwell from Springfield Illinois. Pretince asked, “Have you had people you didn’t get along with personally turn out to be good to work with professionally, or vice versa?” We talked about the origin story of how Seth and Evan’s working relationship began, how their dynamic changes when they work with or involve other people, how they navigate disagreements, and we even debated the existence of extraterrestrial life.

If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.


Seth Rogen is an actor, writer, producer, director, entrepreneur and philanthropist whose films and TV projects have had an impressive impact on popular culture and box office returns. As an actor, his films have grossed over $930 million worldwide and as a filmmaker, his global box office success exceeds $850 million. Alongside longtime collaborator Evan Goldberg, Rogen produces film and television projects through their production company, Point Grey Pictures.

Evan Goldberg is a director, screenwriter and producer. In 2011, Goldberg alongside long time collaborator Seth Rogen, founded Point Grey Pictures (PGP), a production company dedicated to creating multi-genre film and television content anchored in dynamic, authentic and passionate storytelling. Through PGP, Goldberg has produced a diverse slate of films such as 50/50, Neighbors, Good Boys and the Academy Award -nominated The Disaster Artist. In the TV space, Goldberg currently produces Future Man on Hulu, Black Monday on Showtime, Preacher on AMC, and The Boys on Amazon.


Connect with Seth and Evan:
Twitter: @SethRogen
Instagram: @SethRogen
Facebook: Seth Rogen

People Mentioned:
Sammy Fogell (Childhood Friend)
Sam Raimi (Director)
Stanley Kubrick (Director)
Jeremy Irons (Actor)
Kevin Smith (Filmmaker)
Jim Carrey (Actor)
Kyle Hunter (Producer)
Ariel Shaffir (Producer)
Eric Kripke (Writer)
Christopher Miller and Phil Lord (Filmmaking Duo)
Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris (Filmmaking Duo)
Bonnie and Terry Turner (Producing Duo)
Johnathan Levine (Director)
Alex McAtee (Producer)
Sandy Rogen (Seth’s Mom)
Judd Apatow (Filmmaker)
Sam Catlin (Writer)
Michael Shannon (Actor)
Kevin Corrigan (Actor)
David Krumholtz (Actor)
Paul Sheer (Actor)
June Diane Raphael (Actress)
Jason Mantzoukas (Actor)

Movies Mentioned:
Pineapple Express
This Is the End (2013)
Neighbors (2014)
Superbad (2007)
50/50 (2011)
The Night Before (2015)
Sausage Party (2016)
Good Boys (2019)
Spaceballs (1987)
Reservoir Dogs (1992)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
Evil Dead (1981)
Bad Lieutenant (1992)
Lolita (1997)
Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)
Swingers (1996)
Clerks (1994)
Wayne’s World (1992)

TV Shows Mentioned:
The Larry Sanders Show (1992-1998)
Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000)
The Boys (2019-)
3rd Rock from the Sun (1996-2001)
Undeclared (2001-2002)
Preacher (2016-)

Other Mentions:
How Did This Get Made Podcast
Sep 10, 2019
Clouds & Pipes / Yuka Honda, Sonic Songstress
“To me, it's not about really external/internal. It's about a pipe between me and others...I have all these thoughts and I want to express them all, but people are not always ready to receive them. Then when you get together and express something...sometimes I can find a pipe where we can connect.” -Yuka Honda

My guest this week is Yuka Honda- a musician, composer, producer and all around fantastic artist. She’s one half of the duo Cibo Matto, and has worked with a range of musicians: from well-known artists such as the Beastie Boys, Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon, to lesser-known but no-less-incredible artists such as Petra Haden, Mike Watt, and Medeski Martin & Wood. Her latest work is a multi-media operatic theatre piece called No Revenge Necessary. She’s done so many great things over the years, and is a dear friend whom I was excited to sit down and have a conversation with.  For this episode, Yuka and I explored a question from Melissa Hui from San Francisco, CA. Melissa asked, “How much of creative expression is for ourselves vs. others?” We talked about how ideas, images, and feelings take the shape of clouds inside of our heads. When collaborating, Yuka looks to create a pipe connecting her ideas (or the clouds in her head) to the clouds in other people’s heads. And to wrap off our incredibly uplifting/poetic conversation, we answered a question about what we would do in the face of death.  If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019. 


Yuka C. Honda is a musician/producer/composer/performer. Residing in New York City since the mid-1980s, Honda is best known for the band Cibo Matto. Honda has released three solo albums and has produced recordings by Sean Lennon, Martha Wainwright, Yoko Ono Plastic Band, and Cibo Matto. Currently Honda has been performing and recording with CUP (duo with her husband Nels Cline) as well as with her solo entity Eucademix and ON/IN, a duo collaboration with Akio Mokuno. 



Connect with Yuka Honda:
Instagram: @Eucademix
Facebook: @Yuka C. Honda
Twitter: @YukaCHonda

Yuka’s Art Mentioned:
  • No Revenge Necessary (Original Multimedia Opera composed and directed by Yuka Honda)
People Mentioned:
  • Cibo Matto (Band with Yuka Honda + Miho Hatori)
  • Beastie Boys (Hip Hop Group)
  • Yoko Ono (Musician) 
  • Sean Lennon (Musician) 
  • Petra Haden (Violinist) 
  • Mike Watt (Bassist)
  • Medeski Martin & Wood (Band)
  • Marc Ribot (Guitarist)
  • Caetano Veloso (Composer)
  • Vincent Gallo (Actor/Musician)
  • Jamie Foxx (Actor)
  • Nels Cline (Guitarist/Composer)
Venues Mentioned:
  • Knitting Factory
  • National Sawdust
Sep 03, 2019
Art & Politics / Shepard Fairey, Propagandist
“I want to be transparent that any image with an agenda (which is actually most images) is a form of propaganda. It’s just whether you try to hide that fact or whether you’re honest about it.”-Shepard Fairey

My guest this week is Shepard Fairey- he is an artist and a self-titled propagandist who is perhaps most known for his HOPE Obama Poster or for his Andre the Giant Has A Posse OBEY Campaign. If you’ve lived near any American metropolis, you’ve probably seen his work stenciled onto the sides of various buildings or as a sticker slapped on the back of a fire hydrant. Recently, his series We The People featured Latinas, Native Americans, Muslims and African Americans, and could be seen at nearly every protest and rally in the country. Shepard’s also quite the philanthropist - he and his wife Amanda started a campaign called Make America Smart Again, which called for Americans be more informed, involved, and engage in healthy dialogues with one another.

For this episode, we analyzed a question from Shishuraj Karmalkar from Mumbai, India. Shishuraj asked, “How do you wrestle with the statement that artists are 'selfish' since they're off worrying about their art, and not devoting more energy to political rebellion in troubled times?” Shepard and I discussed how art can transform from something selfish to selfless, the intended (and unintended) message art can convey, and if you can ever truly divorce art from politics. He also answered an off-topic question about God with a reference to the movie Dodgeball, so that was pretty cool.

If you have a question about the creative process, that you think would spawn a good conversation on this show, ask me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter tagged #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes are coming out every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.

In 1989, while at Rhode Island School of Design studying for his Bachelor of Fine Art in Illustration (which he earned in 1992), Shepard Fairey created the “Andre the Giant has a Posse” sticker that later evolved into the OBEY GIANT art campaign. In 2008, his portrait of then-Democratic candidate Barack Obama became an internationally recognized emblem of hope. Since then, Fairey has painted nearly 100 public murals, become one of the most sought-after and provocative artists in the world, and changed the way people converse about art and view the urban landscape.


Connect with Shepard Fairey:
Twitter: @ObeyGiant
Instagram: @ObeyGiant

Shepard FaireyArt Mentioned:
Barack Obama ‘Hope’ Poster
‘Andre the Giant Has a Posse’ Campaign
We the People’ Series
Bowery Mural
God Saves and Satan Invests

Movies/TV Shows Mentioned:
Triumph of the Will (1935) *WARNING - literally Nazi Propaganda*
They Live (1988)
The Loudest Voice (TV Series, Showtime)
Dodgeball (2004)

People Mentioned:
Bob Marley (Singer-Songwriter)
Bob Dylan  (Singer-Songwriter)
Joe Strummer (Musician)
Dead Kennedys (Band)
The Rolling Stones (Band)
Chuck D (Rapper)
Barack Obama (Politician)
George W. Bush (Politician)
Donald Trump (Politician)
Adolf Hitler (Politician)
Robert Indiana (Artist)
Andy Warhol (Artist)
Jasper Johns (Artist)
Barbara Kruger (Artist)
George Orwell (Author)
Ray Bradbury (Author)
John Carpenter (Filmmaker)
Ben Stiller (Actor)
Vince Vaughn (Actor)
Jason Bateman (Actor)
Leni Riefenstahl (Director)
Aug 27, 2019
Originality & Imitation / Rian Johnson, Filmmaker
“You have to be kind of angry about something to write a script...and if the thing that you're angry about is not something that you identify in yourself, I'm always wary of that.” -Rian Johnson

This is the very first episode! My guest is THE Rian Johnson- he is a writer, director, filmmaker extraordinaire. I was in his very first movie, Brick. He then went on to make The Brothers Bloom, Looper, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi. He’s an extraordinary thinker, conversationalist, artist, and human being. For this episode, we took a deep dive into a question from Alexandra Kolmanofsky from Louisville, Kentucky. She asked, “How do you get inspired by other people’s creations and create something unique that is completely your own without taking too much from the inspiration?” Rian offered some incredible insight on what distinguishes inspiration from imitation, what are the limitations and advantages of dealing with genre, and if any piece of art can ever be considered “original.” We also seriously pondered whether cereal is, in fact, soup (or not).  If you have a question about the creative process, share it on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) using the hashtag #creativeprocessing, or by emailing New episodes available every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.

ABOUT THE GUEST: Johnson’s career began at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. After writing and directing a few short films that won awards but did not bring him to the attention of mainstream audiences, Rian decided to make this film, even if it was his last.
His first feature film Brick premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2005 where it won the Special Jury Prize for originality and vision. Always with Ram Bergman producing and Steve Yedlin as his Director of Photography, Rian went on to write and direct Brothers Bloom (2008, starring Mark Ruffalo, Rachel Weisz and Adrian Brody), Looper (2012, starring Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017, starring Daisy Ridley, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher).

Johnson has also directed many episodes of television including two classic episodes of “Breaking Bad” — both voted in the top 10 best episodes of the series by viewers. 


Connect with Rian Johnson:Twitter: @rianjohnsonInstagram: @riancjohnson

Movies Mentioned:
Brick (2005)
-The Brothers Bloom (2008)
-Looper (2012)
-Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)
-Knives Out (2019)
-The Evil Dead (1981)
-Barton Fink (1991)
-Breathless (1960)
-A Woman Is a Woman (1961)
-Barry Lyndon (1975)
-A Clockwork Orange (1971)
-Jacob’s Ladder (1990)
-Miller’s Crossing (1990)
-21 Jump Street (2012)
-Hail, Caesar! (2016)
-True Grit (2010)
-True Grit (1969)
-Sorry to Bother You (2018)
-Under the Skin (2013)

People Mentioned:
Sam Raimi (Director)
-The Coen Brothers: Joel & Ethan (Writers and Directors)
-William Goldman (Writer)
-Jean-Luc Godard (Director)
-Stanley Kubrick (Director)
-Dashiell Hammett (Writer)
-The Beatles (Musicians)
-Little Richard (Musician)
-Chuck Berry (Musician)
-Phillip K. Dick (Writer)
-Lawrence “Larry” Kasdan (Writer)
-Jonathan Glazer (Director)
-Boots Riley (Director)
-Wes Anderson (Writer and Director)

Other Mentions:
”You Never Give Me Your Money” - The Beatles (1969)
-The Continental Op by Dashiel Hammett (1989)
-Models of anxiety: Responses of rats to novelty in an open space and an enclosed space. Ennaceur, Abdel & Michalikova, S & Chazot, Paul. (2006).
Aug 19, 2019
COMING SOON - Episode 1 with Rian Johnson!
Here’s a little snippet from the very first episode of Creative Processing featuring writer/director extraordinaire Rian Johnson! I was in his very first movie, Brick as well as his third movie Looper. He also made The Brothers Bloom, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi. He’s an extraordinary thinker, artist, and human being. I always love conversations with him, and hopefully you’ll enjoy hearing this one.

So, check it out and SUBSCRIBE! Episode 1 comes out Monday, August 19th and then there’ll be new episodes every Tuesday for the next ten weeks.

Each episode focuses on a question submitted from you all about anything surrounding the creative process. So, if you have a question that you’d like answered, you can ask me on social media using the hashtag #creativeprocessing, or email
Aug 13, 2019
Joseph Gordon-Levitt wants to hear your questions about creativity...
In his new podcast, "Creative Processing," Joseph Gordon-Levitt wants to explore all aspects of creativity and artistic collaboration. Each episode will focus on a single question contributed by the audience. Questions can be about any aspect of the creative process: from writing your first screenplay, to dealing with procrastination; from an actor's relationship with their character, to a musician's relationship with their instrument - or anything in between. Every episode will see Gordon-Levitt offer his own honest insights on the topic, and then invite a range of notable guests to join him in the conversation and provide their own unique perspective.

Submit your questions to Joe on social (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc) using the hashtag #creativeprocessing, or by emailing So subscribe! The first episode of Creative Processing will launch on August 19, 2019, with new episodes available every Tuesday through October 22, 2019.
Jul 11, 2019