Delays in the Creative Process
Arriving at your creative destination is never a straight line
You have probably heard or seen images depicting the creative process. It usually starts with a black dot in the lower left-hand corner, the origin. It ends with a corresponding black dot in the upper right-hand corner, the goal. Instead of methodically marching to the goal, a line representing progress takes a detour. Left, right, loop-the-loop, north, east, south, west. It has to go in all sorts of directions before its arrival. For me, these depictions capture part of the process. They capture the the idea that creativity is free roaming and that you have to be open to the process in order to really find what you are looking for. They fail to miss, however, the emotional and temporal toll this process takes.
The above animation reflects this feeling. At points during my creative process things click and I feel like I make a lot of progress. Other times, my progress grinds to a halt. The moments of clarity are bookended by extreme uncertainty. In particular, the final parts of project development intensify these dynamics. This creates a kind of whiplash. Nonetheless the process continues.
This is where I am at in a client project I was planning to share for this month. But, as described in this post, our final steps have introduced new complications and the project is not quite ready. When it is, you will be sure to know through this newsletter.
With every project this way of navigating creativity continues to surprise, challenge, and satisfy me. I am excited to share these discoveries when the project is out. Until then, I leave you with this animation: stretching the muscle of creativity.