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15 Quotes from ‘Creativity, Inc.’ by Pixar President Ed Catmull

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Ed Catmull / Courtesy of Pixar

With the announcement of Pixar President Ed Catmull’s upcoming retirement, we thought it would be fun to look back through his book Creativity, Inc. and reflect on the wisdom he shared.

The 2014 book not only documents the origins of Pixar Animation Studios from co-founder Catmull’s perspective, but in it he also shares insights about the Pixar’s creative process that has made the studio so successful over the years.

Without further adieu, here are 15 interesting, inspiring and awesome quotes from Creativity, Inc.:

15) “Since change is inevitable, the question is: Do you act to stop it and try to protect yourself from it, or do you become the master of change by accepting it and being open to it?”


14) “When I say that the fate of any group enterprise, and the individuals within it, are interconnected and interdependent, it may sound trite. But it’s not.”

13) “Most think of animation as the characters just moving around in funny ways while they deliver their lines, but great animators carefully craft the movements that elicit an emotional response, convincing us that these characters have feelings, emotions, intentions.”


12) “The most creative people are willing to work in the shadow of uncertainty.”


11) “Ultimately, what we’re after is authenticity.”


10)”You’ll never stumble upon the unexpected if you stick only to the familiar.”


9)”Earning trust takes time; there’s no shortcut to understanding that we really do rise and fall together.”


8) “Like I always say when talking about making a movie, easy isn’t the goal. Quality is the goal.”


7) “I believe that no creative company should ever stop evolving.”


6) “To keep a creative culture vibrant, we must not be afraid of constant uncertainty. We must accept it, just as we accept the weather. Uncertainty and change are life’s constants. And that’s the fun part.”


5) “Do not discount ideas from unexpected sources. Inspiration can, and does, come from anywhere.”

4) “Excellence, quality, and good should be earned words, attributed by others to us, not proclaimed about ourselves.”

3) “We can accept that any given idea may not work and yet minimize our fear of failure because we believe we will get there in the end.”


2) “In a battle, if you’re faced with two hills and you’re unsure which one to attack, the right course of action is to hurry up and choose.”


1) “Trust doesn’t mean that you trust that someone won’t screw up-it means you trust them even when they do screw up.”

Creativity Inc. can be purchased here.

Do any of the quotes above resonate with you? What are some of your favorite Ed Catmull quotes?

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About Morgan Stradling

Morgan is a native of Arizona and is a desert rat who loves the heat--she doesn’t even turn on the AC in her car in the middle of the summer! She loves big eyeliner, Survivor, Lady Gaga, and, of course, animated films. She has her MBA in Marketing from ASU and now works as a Product Manager for a tech company. Follow her on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.