What Apple TV+’s ‘Home’ can teach you about the creative process

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Apple’s documentary series Home takes us inside the world’s imaginative dwellings, introducing us to their creators. In Sweden, a father designs a nurturing greenhouse over his family’s log cabin for his special needs son. In an impoverished Mexican town, companies build a 3-D printed community. A sci-fi author constructs an earth-bermed home on a former industrial wasteland in Austin.

A common theme ties each episode in this series: while pushing creative bounds, the creators all hit rock bottom moments, says Doug Pray, an executive producer for Home.

We’re always curious how creative folks in different industries address challenging design problems. So, in the latest Design Better podcast episode, we chat with Doug and Matt Weaver, his co-executive producer, about resilience and the creative process.

“I’ve never made a film that I’m proud of that I didn’t at some point completely lose my way,” Doug, who has directed or produced a number of documentaries including The Defiant Ones and Surfwise, tells us. Any creative process—be it building digital products, making a film, or redefining home—includes a reality check, he says. (Marketing extraordinaire Seth Godin, who joined an earlier episode of Design Better, calls it “The Dip.”)

In one episode of Home, a designer produces an architectural palace in Bali with sustainable bamboo. Doug has an almost childlike creativity, asking “why can’t we do this?” Behind the innovation lies open-mindedness, he says.

The profiled creators throughout Home’s nine episodes see opportunities where others don’t and push their projects forward. They create better homes for their families and communities, and do so despite challenges with the climate, environment and regulations.

Want to hear more from Matt and Doug?

Want to hear more from Matt and Doug?, Listen to the full episode here

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