468. January 7th…The Creative Plan…it’s not random….

“18 Months” 2011

“The true harvest of my life is intangible – a little star dust caught, a portion of the rainbow I have clutched” – Henry David Thoreau

we the creative…have all of the answers…perhaps on some days…less on others…and there are those days where the canvas blank and empty…wins the staring contest…I usually walk away…mumble something under my breath and resign myself to being one of the “Castaways” on “Gilligan’s Island”…the one who swam to the other side of the island but nevertheless a castaway….dealing with some degree of escape…

as artists it is very easy to become trapped in a box that appears beautiful…fullfilling…and so creative we can hardly stop producing the exact same work with maybe a slightly diiferent…palette…and call that really doing well…honing the skill…but when does enough of the same…become enough…when does producing the exact mentality and fingerprint…with the exact story and answers…start to sound like an infomercial for your work…and it’s 3am….

creative processes are experiemental…not like dentistry…that does require exactness…yet in the same vein…creativity requires a series of well joined…well executed processess…that follow a series of events…before the next event can take place…moving faster than the process allows…only sabotages the entire process and usually requires we return to “Start”…and begin all over at some level…

the process of creating has a few rules:

Gestation; the part of the creative process that requires everything become ready…that you as the creator do all of the necessary work to ensure that the foundation is solid and stable…as a painter it might be studying the idea…dissecting it  to a point it is completely or as close to revealed as possible… museum and gallery visits…finding the small ideas that you can redevelop and remake…

Ripening: the ripening point is the place where all of the energetics live…the great inspirational ideas that come to us…that necessary dialog with other artists…that we must take that input and reinvent the ideas…a great example of this was yesterday…I had lunch with a friend who saw a particular method of the way creases were painted into a shirt from a magazine I had…this is what she has been looking for..for quite a long time…our conversation drifted to the painting style of DiChirico…and was this style similar…her response was “NO”…pointed to the creases and said…”This is what I want“….this is the place where the ideas are solidified…where we have a visual of the process…and clearly know what the desire is…it’s…..”Sketch Book Time”…and even though the idea may and probably will change during the process…Ripening is the place to return…to build new ideas and plans…reflect on the existing ones and move into the process…

Quickening: is the defined mission…the moment before impact with you and the designated point of impact…where everything is ready…the inspiration has given way to a rabid desire to only produce…and linear time is rapidly losing it’s grip…this is the preparation stage…where all is ready…all the tools…sixguns…sheriffs badge…Ipod on Random…water….food…phone is off…door locked…and you are behind the starting gate…froth on your mouth…smoke coming from your nostrils…and the anticipation sits high…all is ready…

Implementation: the work…and only the work…this phase of the creative process is strictly designed to get it out there…initiate the plan..and see if what you thought looks like what you’re doing…aspects of the work begin to reveal their personalities…and the event is “hands on”…production…mode…for  many  it is the “Frenzy”…that place where nothing else exists…except the work….it is a groove…and the only true groove…that the work itself gets done…

Reflection: like anything that gets done there is a time to evaluate the work…put it into perspective…see what happened and what might need to happen…everybody has a different method…some of my friends say…”I put it aside and let it sit for a few days and see how it feels“….” Sometimes when I think it’s done I hang it in a place I will have to see it all of the time and then decide“…”I leave it on the easel for a week“….”Nothing…it’s never done“…”Name it“…”let it sit“….

Decision: what happens to it…where does the work go…how does it get there..art..like artists come in a variety of ways…it’s great to produce art for the sake of producing art and it’s equally great to make a living at it….depending on your choice….this is where  a “Y” appears in your road…if the work is going to a gallery…maybe multiple critiques and a rating system is installed…after all most successful artists will tell you only 10% of the work is any good…..if the work is being produced for the sake of art…maybe critique is equally as valid and offers some insight into where the experiment  may move to next…

most creatives lose their momentum in the Ripening  and Implementation processes due to a variety of reasons…both of these places have the greatest concentrations of work involved and often…distraction and poor work habits cause the failure…

I feel as an artist I must have a well executed plan to work from…a high level of discipline and my ideas must be aligned well with intention…there is very little room for random thinking…action…and execution….yet there has to be a flexibility…that has been well thought out…in the event like Mike Tyson says…”Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth“…

all of the processes required for the creative to create are held together by one essential bond…that no matter what step a person is in…the process requires work…being creative is easy…doing something with that creativity is the difficult part…as it is work…and often those who see the finished product don’t see the effort…labor…and struggle involved to get from  an idea to completion…

“Creativity has more to do with the elimination of the inessential than with inventing something new.” – Helmut Jahn

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