It's simple, really. And it needs to be. The act of creating is daunting enough. Who needs a complicated process to get it done?
My four step creative process:
- Input: I am constantly gathering visual material. Harvesting. Studying. They come through many venues. My eyes stay open to things that grab me.
- Ideas: If something grabs me, it often inspires a new painting idea. I collect these ideas in a spark file that I can access at any moment.
- Go: If steps one and two have been regularly attended to, I will not have a shortage of inspirational energy when it comes time to step foot in the studio. I chose a "next thing" and I go with it.
- Flow: Given the proper conditions, my concentration will slip into the flow state. This is ideal, as this facilitates peak creativity and concentration. And when this happens, the creative process is magical. Powerful. Tantalizing.
To confess, I have most definitely simplified these stages for you so you could fill in the blanks with your own preferences. For instance: What are the venues of my visual input? See? That part doesn't matter. What matters is that my eyes are on the look out. The point of #1 is for you to keep your eyes on the look out as well.
And, to be honest, I need these to be in a simple, memorable format, so that when I feel blocked, I can search through these steps to discover where I need to place more energy and time. Sort of a mental cliff-note reference card that I can flip through when I'm stuck. There's always a step waiting for me. Always some stage of this process that I can easily insert myself into and regain momentum.
It's not such a mystery, really. It's about keeping myself somewhere in these steps. This is how I get it done.