THE CREATIVE BURDEN.

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:

I get really sad after good stuff.

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.

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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.

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