Our first print issue was created with you in mind, the professional who must come up with ideas, in one form or another, day in and day out as part of your work. You might be just starting out, full of zeal, lust, and misplaced focus. Or maybe you’re well recognized and established, wondering about your legacy. No matter where you are in your career, this magazine is for you—the quest to make your best work never ends. With Sixtysix, we hope to help you do that, while making a few friends and having some fun while you’re at it.
I’ve published a print magazine every year for 23 years. The amount of people who can claim the same is small, especially those under 40. My own experience provides me with several lessons I can speak about with authority, like how to watch an entire industry collapse (Tower Records, you were a real one!), how to use a fax machine, or how to sell print ads from a dorm room in the ’90s. But one lesson stands out to me the most: A dream becomes reality when it’s met with dedication and sacrifice.
I’ve always loved magazines. I’ve published dozens of different titles, built several companies, and have had the opportunity to do, see, and experience things I would have never expected along the way. I’m not exceptionally talented at what I do, nor am I the savviest businessman, but what I’ve learned is that most people with successful careers aren’t either. What they are is focused. They have a goal, a mission, a purpose—and they hunt it down tirelessly. Failure becomes part of the process, not the end of it. Deal with the suck and then keep moving.
Through many different organizations and projects, the other big insight I’ve had is that the most rewarding work always has the same trait: making your best work with the best people. There is nothing quite as motivating as working on a team hell-bent on making something great. Great work doesn’t happen alone or without creativity. But what does “great” look like? And how do you improve creativity?
With Sixtysix, we aim to explore just that: “the craft of creativity.” As photographer Randal Ford told me, “Great work comes out of great operation.” It takes lots and lots of people to create your best work. Only hacks put faith into the quiet rustic cabin trope—no real work gets consistently made like that. Your best work will happen in your real life, your hectic one, with messy relationships, ups and downs, stressors and distractions. Anyone can focus in a cabin; the greats focus at home. The great creators build a strong support system that helps them focus and turn the frantic, the impulsive, and the laughable into the successful, the brilliant, and the meaningful.
The very first issue of Sixtysix was a hazy idea of mine brought to life with focus, some luck, and a wonderful group of editors, designers, photographers and publishers. Cabins are great for naps, but, in my opinion, they’re no good for greatness. Here’s to getting out in the world, building your team, and to creating your best work.
Sixtysix No. 1: Don’t miss the nearly 200 pages of captivating conversations from artists and designers we admire. It just might challenge the way you think about your own work.