Voxpop – who is the most inspirational public speaker you have seen?

Last week’s Typo London event brought design stars including Michael Bierut, Chip Kidd and Ghana’s King Bansah to the capital. Who is the most inspirational public speaker you have seen and what was so special about them?


‘It would have to be Alan Fletcher at the Typographic Circle, back in 2004. Alan was a big influence on me as a student, so I felt very lucky to discover first-hand that he was as witty, eloquent and individual in life as in his work. Stories flowing, glass of wine in hand, the audience hung on his every word, all hoping to absorb a little of that Fletcher magic.’

Ross Shaw, design director, Roundel


‘Ten years ago I saw Milton Glaser give a lecture entitled “Ten Things I Have Learned”. I’ve always loved his work, but I wasn’t expecting him to be such a gifted raconteur, nor for his accumulated wisdom to be so hilarious, generous and full of brilliant insight. More topically, I’d highly recommend Steve Jobs’ much-celebrated Stanford Commencement Speech from 2005 – a poignant lesson about the choices we make and the paths we take in our lives.’

Katja Thielen, creative director, Together Design



‘The best lecturers embody one purpose. Hans Rosling and his amazing ability to make data clear. Matthew Collings debunking contemporary art. Steve Jobs for making a PowerPoint presentation (oh OK, a keynote) utterly compelling. Richard Dawkins for asking the difficult questions about talking snakes. Great lecturers are the epitome of one of my favourite ideas — it’s important to be truthful. It’s vital to be interesting. A great driver for a brilliant speaker. A smart path for those in design to follow.’

Simon Manchipp, creative director, Someone



‘The best talk I’ve heard in recent times is by Ken Robinson talking about schools that kill creativity. Most creatives are dull to listen too, but Ken delivers his message in such a compelling way that you just want to hear more when he’s done. But William Lane Craig is my ultimate living hero and source of inspiration. I love the way he so effortlessly wipes out Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens with well-thought-through intelligent counter-arguments.’

Marksteen Adamson, partner, Arthur Steen Horne Adamson


Hide Comments (3)Show Comments (3)
  • SheenaRina November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    JR Can art change the world was well delivered and inspiring.

  • Regine Wilber November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    Terry Gilliam spoke years ago as part of the D&AD lectures. It was truly fascinating and created a hunger for creativity, wit and humour in advertising and design that’s lasted for all that time that’s passed since.
    (never mind I was moving house that day and had some fish sauce in my rucksack among other herbs and spices which started to leak during the talk – Terry did well to occupy my neighbour not to notice the ensuing stench).

  • liam November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    I know this video isn’t creative. But I think it says a lot for doing something you value and you love. Seeing a grown man cry before a rugby match. Now that is emotion, passion and commitment.


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