Note: This post has been very difficult to write.
Last week I read a wonderful piece by Lee Crutchley, one of my current favourites in the world of typography and general creativity. It’s called:
In and because of all of it’s simplicity and honesty, I related immensely to it – not only because (like all creatives) I have been there, but also given that where I feel that I am as a creative right now is actually quite close to it.
One of the main reasons I get sad after (and during) good stuff is that same pop-psychology reason which affects a lot of people. WHAT IF THE GOOD STUFF GOES BAD?!
Or something like that.
I find myself caught up in a routine (daily, sometimes weekly) made up of chores that I am not necessarily unhappy doing, but would rather replace with other tasks. I either “waste time” on irrelevant things – cleaning my study, paying speeding fines (of all things, really) – or struggle incessantly to cover some sort of ground in my school and work tasks, generally to no avail. It all makes me so frustrated that I end up unproductive in the things I actually want to be doing, too.
I have unfortunately become all too familiar with Mr. Crutchley’s notion of ‘nothing’ – no feeling, no thinking, no urge to create. It takes me ages to get through the simplest of tasks. And then, once I do manage to get to the end of one, I generally spend the next hour or so contemplating what to do next, the result of which tends to be more ‘nothing’. Or a nap.
I guess you’d call it a creative rut. In this context, I’m choosing to christen it the creative burden. It’s incredibly infuriating to be bursting with a passion to create but have no energy to fulfil it.
I’m not sure if I’ve gotten around to solving this one, yet. Sometimes, it’s a matter of waiting out the days until that one moment of inspiration that gets me through the most urgent bits of work, and then it’s back to this – the nothing, the burden, whatever it is.
But, since I started writing this two days ago, I may have some new light to shed on the subject. Today (Sunday), following a very nice evening last night and a lovely morning today, I’m actually (albeit very slightly) motivated to work, to finish tasks and attempt new ones. So it may well be a matter of dedicating some time for myself, to do things that allow to me to stop and breathe, to be with people who make me happy.
P.S. Mr. Crutchley makes wonderful books for creatives, one of which I happen to very happily own. It’s called The Art of Getting Started – grab a copy and thank me later.