Thursday, April 23, 2009

Creative Process

Although this was about typography I thought Ned Shalanski captured what is true about other things like writing. Dying yarn. Planting a flower bed. Composing a tune. I’m never far from the voice in my head that tells me – That should be perfect, you slob. Doesn’t matter from email to the lemon curd birthday cake I’m making today.

NS: Mistakes are beautiful. They are such a relief to see in a culture that over-emphasizes perfection. I think it’s so fantastic when the pretenses of a methodology—in this case, clean, straight lines—get broken down. One of my favorite things Ed Benguiat always says is, “You’re gonna draw a type by just looking at the computer? Forget about it! You need paper, man! You need pencils, man! You can’t just go to your computer screen and start from scratch! You’re crazy!” The creative process with hand drawing is more intuitive because you are connecting with that piece in a deeper way. I feel that many budding designers get too easily caught up with the product and forget about the importance of process.


Katy Bowser said...

Gosh, and doesn't that last part just apply to all kinds of creative endeavors? The importance of process. I spent a lot of time this week pushing myself to create something and hit a wall until I started to spend a little time exploring, playing, messing around. Then the characters in my story stopped their creative strike and started to come alive a bit. Thanks very much for this, Margie. How cool.

Margie Haack said...

Katy, yes, I so agree. In fact, just this week I was also reminded how helpful it is to sit down -- AWAY from the computer, think, stare out the window, and read a book I'd been saving. For what? A better day? A more convenient time? Something just that simple can restore a bit of creative hopefulness

jenni said...

I really struggle with perfection, too - in that I never reach that glorious state (and believe that I should). Also, for all the structured outlines I type up for my articles, I jot down many more thoughts - ones I actually use - with a pen. There is something to using a pen and paper. Thanks for this great quote, Margie.