My Creative Journey: The Ins and Outs
Ah, creativity. A familiar friend that I can always count on… for the most part anyway.
Do you remember what it’s like to be a child with the imagination that dreams up blasting into the galaxy with your duct-tape-cardboard spaceship? What about the pizzeria and all its fixings you made out of play-doh? That is the kind of creativity we wished we all had forever. Easy, effortless, and fun.
As we grow older, we tend to lose sight of that effortless fun. Especially for folks in the creative fields. Artists, designers, photographers are pressured to make things pop. Which sometimes makes being creative a daunting task when being put on the spot. Most people do not realize that creativity, and it’s journey, are a process.
Allow me to share how the creative journey has helped to shape my life and allows me to create meaningful work.
Existing as a Creative Mind
I think it’s fair to say we are all creative in some shape or form. But one person’s creativity is not equal to another’s. In fact, I don’t think creativity can be measured for that very reason. It’s the same reason why you can’t compare your creativity to someone else’s, both can be creative, just in different ways. That is a beautiful attribute of creativity, there are various perspectives. Haven’t you heard? —We are all capable of whatever we put our minds to—thanks mom and dad.
Describing my creative journey would be taking a walk through my life. I create from a place that allows me to explore how I view the world and how it has influenced me. I create to let others know that their needs are valued and seen.
Hate to break it to you, there’s not exactly an on and off switch for creativity. It’s always on, but sometimes quietly observing in the background. Daily discovery requires you to be like a sponge, soak up everything you can, as often as you can. You never know if you will need it at a different time in your life, whether it be for art or just in life.
So, what does the creative journey mean? It’s about discovering yourself over and over again, each day. What kind of impact can you make today just by being yourself? Your work is an extension of you, so what do you want it to say? That’s what creativity is ultimately, the freedom of being yourself and letting your work show for it. As you grow and change, so will your work.
Be Ready to Fail
Failure is uncomfortable, but so is growth. Without failure, we may not come up with some of the ideas that we do. Or it might inspire us to take a different route, gain another perspective. As a designer it is easy to fall in the trap of being a perfectionist because you are so detail oriented. Accept that you are not perfect, and that every creative individual has failed at some point.
It is not a bad thing to fail, it just means you tried. Failure can allow you to stay in the same place, or move forward if you choose to. You can think of failure as a stepping stool to get you to create what you are meant to.
Creative Blocks are Inevitable
Many people may think that being creative means that you are constantly inspired with ideas all the time. That couldn’t be more far from the truth. Creative blocks are like any other, they have ill-timing. But they can be an important tool in your creative process.
Some may be scared of creative blocks because it means failure. Also not true. As awful as it sounds to experience them, they can be useful. Creative blocks are like a gentle indication that you should switch up your routine a bit, learn how to plug in a different way. Don’t be afraid to start finding inspiration in unlikely places, because ultimately it can lead you to some amazing surprises.
Communication is key. Whether that be with yourself, your team, or your clients. Communicating and collaborating can help you get different perspectives and understandings that will allow you to step out of a creative block. Don’t be afraid to speak up!
Being Present and Trusting Yourself
The most meaningful work comes from being present in the moment, focusing on the task at hand. Being present allows you to intentionally plant the seeds of creativity. Easier said than done, I know. Just hear me out, if you are willing to be present, magical things can come from it. That is for your life and your art. You will start to be influenced by the world around you, which in turn can make for more impactful design.
Learn to trust yourself, you will find the answers you need as a creative individual. Know that your design will impact individuals in some way, but it is up to you to discover how that comes into fruition.