Creative people, like you and me, live and breathe to create. We feel the need to create something out of nothing. That’s what gets us excited. Solving problems with the available tools we have at our disposal is what creativity is all about in my book. The fascinating aspect about creativity is that it comes and goes whenever it wants*. We all have been in situations like this. You’ve planned your day full of tasks to complete: You need to get some mails out, or perhaps you need to get work done on your project. Then, out of nowhere you get this sudden urge to do something completely different. You want to create something. So what do you do? Will you let this creative mood slip and continue as planned or do take this moment and start to create something beautiful? It really depends on how urgent the tasks are, but whenever possible, I’d take the latter option. There is no briefing to follow, there are no borders set. So just go with the flow and set your mind free. It gives me a lot of energy and it gets me going for a longer period.
Allowing yourself this creative space is actually crucial to your functioning as a creative professional. I’ve been in such situations before. A few years back, when our team was extremely busy, my work would have been scheduled in advance for weeks on end. For months, I’d keep on pumping out designs, concepts and whatever deliverables neede to be made. It felt like being a machine producing non-stop in a factory. It felt like a chore. There was no fun to be had. The quality was good, but it never felt like it had reached its full potential, should more time have been available. What we missed back then, were little breaks to allow us to take a moment to breathe, take a good look around and move forward with a clear mind. These little breaks would have allowed us to get into the creative mood and generate new energy. You’ll see work gets done a lot more easily and it’s more fun as well.
This instant photo is shot today, in the middle of a creative mood. I came home from a business meeting and I felt like to take a self-portrait. So I set up the camera, metered the light and just took a shot. The first two were pretty basic portrait shots, just like what I set out to do. But since I was shooting with a pack of Fujifilm FP-100C, I had another 8 films left to play with. That’s when I started to try something different. I tried creating interesting shapes using double exposure. The final result actually quite pleasing, the shape is interesting and the colours and the texture in the background make it very interesting to look at. It’s no masterpiece, it’s not innovative, but it’s a creative expression of that very moment. And that’s what it’s all about.
* Of course, there are ways to capture the creative mood and hold on to it. I’m sure I’ll talk about it in a future post!