Feb. 28, 2022

Ep42 - Andrew Darlow Talks About Inventing

Ep42 - Andrew Darlow Talks About Inventing

Episode Forty Two Features Andrew Darlow Talking About Inventing.
My Key Takeaways:
Andrew Darlow was a great guy to interview and he has a very creative mind.  He has been a successful Author, Photographer, and Inventor.
In this episode Andrew shares:

Episode Forty Two Features Andrew Darlow Talking About Inventing. My Key Takeaways:

Andrew Darlow was a great guy to interview and he has a very creative mind.  He has been a successful Author, Photographer, and Inventor.

In this episode Andrew shares:

How his  families businesses helped shape both his mindset as well as his interest in photography and typography.

That his families first Macintosh computer helped to reinforce his interest in fonts and typography.

Where he went as a foreign exchange student and how it impacted him culturally.

How his Dad first exposed him to the world of inventing and what he was able to glean from him.

The calamity that inspired him to develop his first invention, the Gallery Pouch.

What inspires him to create new products.

How Open Innovation has helped make getting his products into companies more accessible.

Why he resumed his education with InventRIght despite already having had a successful invention.

Why LinkedIn is such a key resource for Inventors and Product Developers.

How he uses regular Brick and Mortar retail outlets as inspiration for inventing.

How to approach being rejected when you submit a product and what followup questions to ask.

The meaning behind the hashtag #FirstDayLightCheck

The danger of being distracted by a smartphone while walking in a parking lot

To learn more about Andrew Darlow, his website is AndrewDarlow.com. He can be found on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, FaceBook, and most Social Media as well.  

Following are links to his four books on Amazon:

301 Inkjet Tips and Techniques   Pet Photography 101 (pet photo tips)   Biscuit for Your Thoughts:   Focus and Filter:    Be sure to hit Subscribe in your podcast app so that you don't miss it or any other episodes.


Be sure to hit Subscribe in your podcast app so that you don't miss it or any other episodes.


[00:00:00] Greg Mills: Our guest today is a New Jersey based photographer, consultant and inventor. Over the past 25 years, he has taught amateur and professional photographers, how to improve their photography, workflow, backups, and digital print output at conferences, industry events, and educational institutions, including the PhotoPlus expo DRL photo festival, Columbia university, and the international center of photography in new.

[00:00:28] Greg Mills: His articles and images have been included in many publications, books and TV programs, including animal planet, people magazine and CBS news. He's the editor of imaging, buffet.com and the author of four award-winning books, including a hardcover coffee table book, featuring dog photographs and canine inspired philosophy.

[00:00:51] Greg Mills: His newest book. Focus and filter was an Amazon hot new release. And the number one bestseller in the lighting category in 2009, he licensed a custom bubble bag idea to frame destination.com. After his framed artwork was damaged after an exhibition, since then over a million dollars of gallery pouch bags had been sold without further ado.

[00:01:16] Greg Mills: Andrew Darlow.

[00:01:18] Andrew Darlow: Thank you so much, Greg, for having me. I love the show. I think you may have to rename it though. I think it should be inventors over 40 and others because of all the amazing interviews you've had with inventors. 

[00:01:30] Greg Mills: I will definitely take that into consideration now, Andrew, can you take a few moments and fill in the gaps from that intro and bring us up to speed with what's going on in your world today.

[00:01:41] Andrew Darlow: Absolutely. I've been really fortunate in my life, both to be born where I was born into have the parents I had. So I was kind of thrown into the world of type Paul graphy and photography and printing. So that was a lot of my upbringing and a lot of that. Rubbed off on me. And as I went through the years, even though I studied business and traveled quite a bit, I went back to a career in photography, which led to so many great things.

[00:02:11] Andrew Darlow: So that's sort of the beginning. And then I can go on and on about all the things that have happened since then. 

[00:02:19] Greg Mills: Let's talk about your family. Did you come from an entrepreneurial or inventors background? Did anyone in your family have their own business or invent anything when you were growing up?

[00:02:29] Andrew Darlow: Yes, definitely. My mother's side, my grandfather was a co-owner in a candy store, so that's the being an entrepreneur. On my dad's side, my grandfather started a company in the printing industry and he called it a Cardinal press. And from there, my dad. And his brothers worked there for many years and then grew the business for the next 30 or 40 years.

[00:02:53] Andrew Darlow: So being in that environment and seeing both what my grandfather did and that w what my dad and my uncle did to build this topography business into a bigger printing business. And then, uh, photography and graphic arts business really had a great impact on me. I can go into sort of my experience working there, which really changed my life, but that beginning and seeing what my dad and many of my other family members went through to build that business and to run that business had a major effect on me. 

[00:03:28] Greg Mills: Now you mentioned typography, and I know that, Steve jobs had listed that as like one of the major things, , Shaped his life. And in the course, curriculums is focused on fonts. And at the time it seemed like a waste or at least that's what he said, but it all joined up together to bring him to where he was when he started Apple.

[00:03:50] Andrew Darlow: Absolutely. So he spoke about that, I think in his commencement speech at Stanford, and he had taken a calligraphy class at Reed college, and then that had such an impact on him that he made sure that when the Macintosh was released in 1984, It had great fonts and I can remember vividly walking up to.

[00:04:12] Andrew Darlow: Uh, Macintosh in 1984, probably January of 84 and in Sears and just playing with the fonts and believe it or not, my family's neighbor ran one of the first and owned and built one of the first computer stores in New Jersey. And so we had one of the first, my dad claims we had the first Macintosh. To come into the state of New Jersey.

[00:04:36] Andrew Darlow: So I was playing with fonts and I had the printer and I, I feel so fortunate to have been able to be exposed to that at such a young age. 

[00:04:46] Greg Mills: Yeah. Now growing up, what did you want to do?

[00:04:51] Andrew Darlow: Well, if I look back on one of my reports from the sixth grade, I wanted to be a radio DJ. 

[00:04:57] Greg Mills: You and me both.

[00:04:59] Andrew Darlow: So here we are. I'm like the guest in your. 

[00:05:03] Greg Mills: I actually had an uncle that was a DJ. I never knew him. He died way before I was born, but I often wondered, what would my life have been like if I had gone that route, but, you know, because I'm more of an introvert and they tend to do a lot of stuff, outside of the radio station, that may not have been a good career choice.

[00:05:23] Andrew Darlow: Well, you know, I did. A few podcasts. I mean, I have one right now related to backup. I'm just not actively producing that because of all the other things I'm doing. But I guess anyone who does a podcast could label themselves like a DJ. So it's, it's truly amazing. What's possible today. 

[00:05:44] Greg Mills: Now you were a foreign exchange student in Japan for, I think about two months.

[00:05:49] Andrew Darlow: Yes. I was in a group in a high school called the future business leaders of America. And I had a wonderful advisor and I learned at that time that there was a scholarship available for people either to go to Japan or Germany and spend the summer with a family. So I see. Okay, that sounds wonderful. Why not send in the application?

[00:06:11] Andrew Darlow: And I was chosen as one of the scholarship recipients and I spent the summer of 1988, right after high school with a family in Nara, Japan, which is on the Western part of Japan, not far from Osaka and where Buddhism first came into Japan. And it was the most unbelievable. In my life, my homestay mother, although she spoke some English, she didn't speak that much English.

[00:06:36] Andrew Darlow: So I was immersed in the Japanese language and the culture. I even went to Japanese high school, which was just unbelievable and, uh, quite different yet similar , to school here. I mean, for example, all the kids have to bow to the sensei before class and all the kids do most of the cleaning and the washing, the windows and the floors and things like that.

[00:06:57] Andrew Darlow: So those are some of the things that are a little different, but otherwise kids are kids. And I had a chance to visit a number of Japan's largest companies like Matsushita, which is Panasonic. And back in 1988, I saw one of the first flat screen. Television. So I had a glimpse into the future and so many other things and experiences that I had there were just unforgettable.

[00:07:21] Andrew Darlow: And that led to me spending a year about a year and a half later, back in Japan at the place called Kansai university of foreign languages. I usually say the Japanese version of it. I think that's the name of it. And that was just incredible. I had so many. Wonderful experiences, learning Japanese, also taking business classes, meeting people from all around the world.

[00:07:43] Greg Mills: It sounds like it really impacted your life and changed.

[00:07:46] Andrew Darlow: Yes. In many, many ways. Most importantly, it gave me a better sense of the world. Gave me a better sense of the history of the United States. Also the history of Japan and Asia. And I had a chance to visit places like South Korea and Thailand . One of the nicest things is I went back with my mom years later and we went to a number of places, But most importantly, I was able to introduce her to my Japanese homestay family.

[00:08:13] Andrew Darlow: And it was just really special to have two families who cared so much about me. 

[00:08:17] Greg Mills: Now, going back to your family and they were in the printing business, how did that kind of influence you as. And not only as a photographer, as an inventor as well.

[00:08:33] Andrew Darlow: Well, as an inventor, I'll start there because my dad. When he had a need, he did what he could to have that need fulfilled either by coming up with something that he created in the shop or something that he could then talk to a big company, who's making a product. And in one case, there was a huge company who made the film for.

[00:08:57] Andrew Darlow: One of the processes that he would always use and he wanted a specific type of film that just wasn't made. So he brought it up to the sales rep and then I spoke to an engineer and he was so confident in this product that he guaranteed a few million dollars in sales. And he told me that after a year or two, they had already.

[00:09:20] Andrew Darlow: $8 million of this product from the company. And that was all based on his idea that made his life easier. So I think that spark I've picked up on that in some way, through my dad. And he's told me about other things as well, that he's done, and he's really great in marketing as well. So I've picked up quite a bit from him and that's just one example. 

[00:09:41] Greg Mills: How do you think your dad got that mindset? You know, the ability to go out and just not accepted Norma.

[00:09:49] Andrew Darlow: I think it was just survival. He was working from quite a young age in the printing business and he learned how to use all the machines. Now these are machines, not too far removed from what Gutenberg has. Invented 500 years before he was born, but he would make sure that they were running properly.

[00:10:09] Andrew Darlow: He would run jobs, he would set type. He would even have to carry led from where they purchased it sometimes onto a bus and then get it there to the shop. And it's just incredible how he was able to learn so much. And I think having to learn and having to like clean the machines and having to put together so many jobs that setting the type in those forms and then running it through the machine and actually getting great product on the other side, I think taught him to solve problems and then just having to help run the business.

[00:10:43] Andrew Darlow: So they would not. Go bankrupt. I think that was a big part of the survival and why he was then able to help grow the business. As the world of digital typography came into play around 1970. 

[00:10:58] Greg Mills: Let's talk about, your first invention, the gallery pouch. How did that come about?

[00:11:03] Andrew Darlow: Well, I had a exhibition of my, a flower photography at a really nice high. Flower shop in Manhattan. The pictures were white wood frames and glass, and everything was fine until the point in which they had to come off the wall. Now, this wasn't a typical gallery situation and I wasn't really clear with them that I should be the one taking.

[00:11:30] Andrew Darlow: Frames off of the wall. So they were taken off in a way that did not get them back into any type of protective covering. And that's not easy to do because I didn't give them the best coverage to start because I really didn't think that much about it. So when I got back my work, I was shocked because this was maybe $1,500, maybe more. Of my frame prints. 

[00:11:58] Andrew Darlow: Most of them had some type of damage and some of them, it was pretty bad like gouges and things like that. The back of many framed prints have a hanging wire. And in order to put the hanging wire onto the back, you need these screw eyes that go into the back and those screw eyes happen to be made of metal.

[00:12:16] Andrew Darlow: And if you put the metal side against the front of a frame, you can imagine the scratching and what can happen. So even though the glass was fine, the white frame. Of most of them, were damaged. So I said, I want to come up with something. I don't want this to happen to other people. So I said to someone who I knew through, ,

[00:12:39] Andrew Darlow: an amazing news group for people who were into digital art and photography, his name is Mark Rogers.

[00:12:47] Andrew Darlow: And I said, mark, can you make me a custom bubble bag so that I can protect my work. And he said, oh, well, I'll try. And because he had the machines that would seal any type of thin plastics, because he would be putting all kinds of different mats and frames into a cellophane. So typical sealers for. Sheets of plastic.

[00:13:13] Andrew Darlow: And, but he tried it with bubble, very lightweight bubble and it worked didn't look great, but it worked. And I was so excited because he was making me these custom bags. And then I said, well, can we talk about working together? I'll help you develop this product. We'll find the right bubble. And we'll find a way to close it and seal it.

[00:13:33] Andrew Darlow: Maybe a month or two of working through all those steps. We came up with something, we were both very proud of the heavyweight bubble that was coated on both sides and no exposed bubbles, something that had beautiful edges. That was because we had a special machine and that machine made these really nice edges because you're talking about artwork.

[00:13:56] Andrew Darlow: So if you had like a really ratty. the bubble bags. To me, it wouldn't really have the same effect as if you have a beautiful edge and then all of them have a flap so that you can just slap it over and close it yourself. And we also decided to allow people to use either their own hook and loop, or we also provided that and they call that gallery pouch with Velcro.

[00:14:24] Greg Mills: Okay. So y'all figure it out the how to make the product. How did you figure out how to market it and how to sell it?

[00:14:32] Andrew Darlow: Well, fortunately mark had been running his business, which is framed destination.com for many years, maybe eight to 10 years at that time, but enough years that he had a loyal. Customer base. And he had everything in place. He had his marketing process, , he had all these things in place, so it?

[00:14:54] Andrew Darlow: wasn't really that much of a reach for him to start offering that to his customers.

[00:14:59] Andrew Darlow: He just put it on the site. I have made a video, which is still used today. It's a little bit cringe-worthy, but it's like a four minute video of me showing. My story about the birth of the gallery pouch bags and how they can be used. And I believe that that had a big impact on the sales because people could see, first of all, someone like themselves who had this struggle and how I'm using it and how it's awesome. Superior to what they normally would think of as bubble or bubble wrap. It's a big difference. So I think when they saw all that, it just helped people to have enough confidence in trying it out. And since then, they've, topped a million dollars in sales so far, which, sounds like a big number and it is for me.

[00:15:50] Andrew Darlow: Obviously, I just get a small percentage of that as the inventor, but I'm happy that a million dollars means that it's helped a lot of people over the years. 

[00:15:59] Greg Mills: Yeah, it sounds like you were very lucky and that you teamed up with the right partner and it was just a good convergence and I'm not trying to take anything away from what you did either. It sounds like you got a lot of your dad's mind.

[00:16:13] Andrew Darlow: Yeah, I feel very fortunate. And my granddad too, he was also very smart, in business He was able to survive in the printing business with four kids for many years.

[00:16:25] Greg Mills: You're obviously a very creative person. What provides you inspiration when neither, taking photography, writing, or designing a new product?

[00:16:35] Andrew Darlow: I think that my desire to have a certain type of product or to have a certain feature of a product or a game, which is one of the areas in which I'm focusing on now is really what drives me to create and to write, item after item in my little invention notebooks. It's this. Need almost to solve problems that I have, because then I find out often that other people are having the same problems or just this desire to make life more fun.

[00:17:07] Andrew Darlow: And that's why I really enjoy the challenge of creating things like games and toys, because if I can help bring a smile to someone's face or bring a family together for an evening. It just gives me so much joy. 

[00:17:20] Greg Mills: Okay. And you're currently working on some products now, correct? 

[00:17:24] Andrew Darlow: Yes. In fact, there's after 15 years, it looks like hopefully in the next six months, I will have a new bubble related product from frame destination, which I'm really excited about. And on the toy side, I'm working on card games and table games and toy car related games. I have all these ideas. And fortunately, there are people out there who will actually take time and listen to me as I create my sell sheets and my pitch videos.

[00:17:57] Andrew Darlow: There's a whole industry out there looking for new ideas, which is really exciting. And you don't have to be an employee of these companies. You just have to know how to be professional and how to present to. 

[00:18:09] Greg Mills: Okay. Now, is that considered open innovation? 

[00:18:13] Andrew Darlow: Yes. That's the buzzword that I learned. I dunno how many years back, and I don't know exactly who coined it, but most of what I've learned in the world of invention is from Stephen P and Andrew Kraus starting 17 years ago probably. Through all their free content. At that time, I had the confidence to present my ideas to Mark Rogers, with the gallery pouch way back then.

[00:18:41] Andrew Darlow: Otherwise it would have been much harder if I didn't have them as a guide. I just wouldn't have known how to approach it, how to talk to a potential licensee. Since then I put my inventing on the back burner because I was focused on writing books and doing consulting and also helping raise my son.

[00:19:01] Andrew Darlow: Just a few years ago, I really said, I want a stronger and more focused approach toward my inventing. And then I became a official premium student and invent. Right. I also learned from a number of other inventors. So that has really made a big difference because I had a coach that I spoke with on average of once a week.

[00:19:22] Andrew Darlow: It really helps when you have someone that you know, is waiting there to talk to you about your inventions. And I didn't want to let them down. And I wanted to just keep moving the process forward and it took longer than I thought, but I'm finally pitching. And that's the key because if you're not selling, you're not really in the game, as they say, and I'm really excited about everything.

[00:19:42] Andrew Darlow: It's like that bamboo, which is like growing underground for. Long, sprouts up and it grows at an amazing pace. So that's what I feel like. I'm just at that point where the bamboo shoot is about to come out of the ground with regard to my other inventions. 

[00:19:58] Greg Mills: Why did you decide to go back and get more education via inventory?

[00:20:04] Andrew Darlow: I guess I, because I kept seeing their amazing videos and I kept seeing success stories from other inventors, either people who had gone through their program or people who they just had on the show, and then they kept learning about inventors through the ages. I was. Listen to podcasts and hear inventor stories.

[00:20:26] Andrew Darlow: I prefer the stories of people who, were able to have a fairly normal life and, and still come up with things that then they either brought to market themselves or that they licensed and seeing all of this over time.

[00:20:40] Andrew Darlow: Made me want to come up with new ideas and made me jump a board and really get into the invent right world. And what I didn't realize through, with invent, right. And there are other programs possibly like this is the community that's formed because they have so many students from so many countries.

[00:21:01] Andrew Darlow: LinkedIn was like, Key, you know, picture like opening a door and there's like all this light, it was like this incredible Oasis of. Like-minded people. And by the way, it wasn't just the people who were working on inventions. It was also the people who were the licensed sores, the people who would be interested in new products, they're all there for the most part.

[00:21:29] Andrew Darlow: And there's actually a fantastic book written by Stephen ke and Benjamin Harrison, all about LinkedIn and. I could not believe the power of LinkedIn and being a part of, of the invent, right. Community sort of brought me into LinkedIn. And then I realized that is the key today for anyone who wants to reach anyone in almost any industry.

[00:22:00] Andrew Darlow: And especially if you want to find decision-makers who can license your. 

[00:22:07] Greg Mills: Yeah. I actually had reached out to Benjamin Harrison to see about having them on the show. And right after I did that, I realized, wait a second, he may not actually be 40 and sure enough, he wrote me back. He busted my chops, but he, was funny. He was like, no, I'm not, we'll have to postpone it a few years. 

[00:22:27] Greg Mills: So you mentioned toys and games. Are there any other industries that you've got ideas for that you're looking to target?

[00:22:36] Andrew Darlow: Yes, I do. I have, I love kitchen. I love Otto. I love the garage. I just love anywhere that you can create something that will allow people to. Do something faster or make it more fun or maybe fit more things in a specific space. And the more I see from other inventors, the more I'm inspired to solve maybe similar problems.

[00:23:07] Andrew Darlow: And so one of my favorite places is the container store. I'll go there and I'll see, there seem to be missing. This particular part, like it could be connected to this and make it so much better or more useful. So I, I would encourage anyone who wants to get into this world to go to somewhere that has products that you have some connection with, that you could use.

[00:23:32] Andrew Darlow: And then. You can go and you can also take pictures so you can see the companies who are making them that's, that's helpful. Almost every label has the manufacturer. And what I do is I'll then go back and I'll take a look at their product line. I'll see if it's selling on Amazon. I'll see what other products are there.

[00:23:53] Andrew Darlow: And also look at reviews. This is probably one of the best tips for anyone who wants to develop new ideas or additions to any type of product. And from there, just find out exactly how you can make this product affordably. You don't have to go crazy with it and just make a virtual prototype or just put something together, yourself, take some pictures of it and learn how to go through the steps.

[00:24:16] Andrew Darlow: Of then, getting a provisional patent application, which for most people, I think it's, if your household incomes under about $200,000 a year, it's only $75 and you can make as many of them as you want. And it allows you to put patent pending on your cell sheets and on your video. And it's the best way to, get, 12 months to start on.

[00:24:40] Andrew Darlow: Some type of protection so that you don't have to always go out and try to get people to sign NDAs. And I'm not a lawyer. This is not legal advice, but from everything I've learned, you can generally feel as though once you have the provisional patent application in place, you can start showing. What you have on a private one-to-one basis or like in zoom calls and things like that.

[00:25:07] Andrew Darlow: You just want to label everything as confidential. I like to put not for sale and just explain to them that this is not something to be shared. Outside of the people who you're showing it to, or their immediate circle. Once you learn the process, that is the key, because like so many things in this. The process is what gets you to the goal line and just follow the footsteps of other successful people. And there's a really good chance that you'll be successful too 

[00:25:35] Greg Mills: Good advice. I kind of had my mind that you would probably be focusing in also on the pet industry. It seems like it'd be a no brainer.

[00:25:46] Andrew Darlow: well. I'm thinking of them too. I do have some ideas and I love. Everything related to pets. I've written two books on photographing dogs. One of them is a how to book called pet photography. 1 0 1. The other one is a whimsical hardcover coffee table book called biscuit for your thoughts, which recently I was honored to see that Simon and Schuster picked up a soft cover rights to that.

[00:26:11] Andrew Darlow: So it's available in soft cover now as well. And. I get so much joy photographing people in their pet. So there are a number of ideas that I have related to pets. 

[00:26:22] Greg Mills: I'm just talking about in general and you've probably noticed this, but the, there was a lot of cross-pollination between industries, like, say for example, You're a plumber. And then you look at another industry and you think, Hey, I could use this particular tool apply it here and create something new in that category.

[00:26:48] Andrew Darlow: Absolutely. Inventions, I think related to tools are made it's somebody gets frustrated and then they just say, you know, I, I can make this so much better. And then they find out how to make it work. And that's really, the key is making it work. And with 3d printing today, I even bought a 3d printer. It was so affordable.

[00:27:10] Andrew Darlow: It's a flash forge and it, it has a pretty small area, six and a half inches. Cubed or so, but it's great for a lot of what, what I want to do. So with 3d printing, whether you do it yourself or whether you have it farmed out and you can create things that look like final products, which is just so incredible.

[00:27:30] Andrew Darlow: And if you're in any kind of industry, it really doesn't matter and you can make something a little better. And one of the best ways to do that is putting something on to. Another product. I think the stereotypical example is a light on the drill. The person didn't invent a drill. They didn't invent the light, but they put the light on the drill to make it easier for people to work. 

[00:27:52] Greg Mills: So what kind of mindset do you need when you're reaching out to these companies and pitching your products? I imagine that there would probably probably be a lot of rejection.

[00:28:06] Andrew Darlow: Yes. I've learned to go for the, no, there's another phrase fell forward and I get inspiration mainly from people who I learned like Dana Knowles. She was on your show. She said that she had either 52 or 53 rejections before her. Hanging shower. Caddy was, accepted by a company for licensing. So you have to go for the no and just, be very appreciative when people give you that now, because it's just another step forward.

[00:28:37] Andrew Darlow: And one example is if you can, and maybe afterwards you can say, oh, thank you so much for taking a look. Could I just ask you one quick question? Most people will say yes. Can you tell me what I may have done better with my presentation? 

[00:28:53] Andrew Darlow: And some people might say, well, this would have been great last year, but it's not great now. So you can mark that down. And then that might be a reason to bring that back or something slightly different a year later. Or they may say something like we really, it's just a little too big for what we do.

[00:29:14] Andrew Darlow: Everything we sell has to fit in this box. So that's a really good point because it's not that hard to make something. And, uh, then you can just get so much from that. And then in many cases you'll also want to ask. I wouldn't be okay for me to check back in with you and in six months or so either with this idea or maybe other ideas and then them usually it will say yes.

[00:29:37] Andrew Darlow: You might also say, well, do you generally like to see one idea at a time. Um, multiples and they may say, , just try to keep it to about three. So you'll get all this great information. And it's amazing how many people will, , license after two or three presentations to the same company. 

[00:29:56] Greg Mills: Okay. Now, do you think you'll ever come up with your own book about inventing.

[00:30:02] Andrew Darlow: That's funny because I just committed myself to a program to speed, write a book and. It was through another program. I was on a, this past month called 30 day LinkedIn sprint run by a gentleman named Tom Kugler. And from that, one of the people was so inspired by his process of bringing together ,

[00:30:28] Andrew Darlow: in this case it was 80 people to write for 30 days straight on LinkedIn, this woman named Nira. She. Decided to do her own sprint and it would be write a book. So I signed up for her program and I plan to do a book related to inventing. It's not so much a how to, because I think Stephen Key and others have done that.

[00:30:53] Andrew Darlow: It's something else, which I won't give away right now, but I'm excited to do. 

[00:30:58] Greg Mills: Okay, well, we'll look forward to that and you'll have to come back on and tell us about it when it's, out, 

[00:31:04] Andrew Darlow: Absolutely. 

[00:31:04] Greg Mills: Let's get ready to wrap this up. Is there anything I haven't asked that you'd like to go.

[00:31:11] Andrew Darlow: the one thing is just because you may be an independent person, companies want your ideas. I think that's the first thing that I'd like to say companies, you would think they have people there that are just. Coming up with ideas all day long and they don't even want to hear from outside inventors.

[00:31:34] Andrew Darlow: And I will say that's true for some, but there are so many companies out there, and there are many companies who get about half of all their ideas from outside inventors. So first know that you are wanted and needed. And then. After that, just learn the process. And I do have a few pet peeve items that I would love to share that I'd like to talk about two things, if that's okay with you. 

[00:32:00] Greg Mills: Oh, definitely.

[00:32:02] Andrew Darlow: Okay. So first this is something that I just came up with recently. It's something that has been bothering me for so many years. I noticed that in my home state of New Jersey, and I'm guessing it's similar elsewhere around the world, about five to 10% of the cars have a headlight out and or tail light out or brake light out.

[00:32:24] Andrew Darlow: So I said, well, what can I do as a single person? I said, well, I see all these hashtag Kemp campaigns is PSA. So I decided to create. Uh, PSA and I call it first day light check that's my hashtag first day light check. And if you go to any of the major social media brands, you'll see my first day light check pop-up.

[00:32:55] Andrew Darlow: It's just a way to see my articles about it. And my goal with this is to. Encourage people on the first day of each month, to check their lights. Just check your lights, check your headlights, check your normal headlights.

[00:33:08] Andrew Darlow: Check your high beams, check your taillights and press the brakes. And check your brake lights. And I believe that if I can inspire enough people to do that, I believe it could, if not save lives, help avoid people from getting stopped by law enforcement, which is nice and reduce the chances of getting a ticket.

[00:33:29] Andrew Darlow: But also it could just reduce injuries and, who knows? I don't think there's anything bad that could come of it. So I'm excited to share that. So that's my first pet peeve. 

[00:33:37] Greg Mills: It sounds like if you could, tie this in with one of your inventions. I bet the, auto industry, particularly if it was around lights would buy into that.

[00:33:47] Andrew Darlow: Yes, I did think about, I can certainly tag some of the big lighting. Companies. My other item that also.

[00:33:58] Andrew Darlow: Bothers me only because I've almost been run over when I've been in a parking lots. This is primarily a parking lot, but it's anywhere where you might be walking, is people on their cell phones when they're in parking lots? I can't explain in my opinion how dangerous this is because. I've literally seen cars come right at me, backing up directly into me.

[00:34:25] Andrew Darlow: And that's because I was very aware. And so I, and this is particularly. Something that I think parents with small kids need to be very careful with. You don't want your kids to run ahead of you in parking lots because cars just can't see you. And, and so you want to keep your kids next to you, but being on a cell phone, looking down while you're in a parking lot, I think is one of the most dangerous things that you can do.

[00:34:54] Andrew Darlow: So my PSA in this case is. Even though there's such a draw to be looking at a cell phone twenty four seven, I would highly recommend if anyone has anywhere where there's cars involved, especially in parking lots, not to be looking at a cell phone. 

[00:35:11] Greg Mills: Okay. Now, Andrew, what's the best way for someone to contact you or to check you out?

[00:35:17] Andrew Darlow: I would just send people to Andrew darlow.com or you. If you're interested in my books, you can just put Andrew Darlow into Amazon or Barnes and noble. So I'll keep it simple. Cause Andrew darl.com we'll have links to everything that. 

[00:35:35] Greg Mills: Okay. That's kind of the umbrella site.

[00:35:37] Andrew Darlow: Yeah. Also, if you're interested in the gallery pallets, you can go to gallery pouch.com and you'll see information. You'll see a video, the video that I talked about of me quite a few years ago, and, uh, a lot of other information about the gallery pouch. 

[00:35:52] Greg Mills: Okay. Lastly, what's the number one piece of advice that you can give for our listeners?

[00:35:59] Andrew Darlow: If you have a dream, then. Write it down and find a way as long as it's reasonable. Just find the people who are out there who are doing what your dream says on that paper and see if you can follow their steps to success. 

[00:36:20] Greg Mills: That's why it's not having to reinvent the wheel. That's rap. Thank you Andrew, for being a guest on entrepreneurs over 40. 

[00:36:29] Andrew Darlow: Thanks so much, Greg, this is so much fun. I appreciate it.