Creative Process: Iteration

20 Jul

Jewish tradition teaches that you have not learned a passage until you have reviewed it 101 times. And more – that there are 70 “faces”, i.e., interpretations, to any given passage. Each review of the passage reveals something new, or something inherent which was not apparent before. Only through a process of iteration in learning does one ultimately achieve something approaching full understanding.

So it may be with our creative work. In the field of electronic composition, composers sometimes face a bit of a challenge with respect to integrating older and newer technologies. Lolita, our Composer of Music for Art, loves her old Yamaha DGX-200 keyboard synth. She has gone back to this instrument over and over, discovering new sounds, effects, combinations, and ways to more effectively bring those sounds into her computer for editing.

The problem is integrating these old school sounds with newer sounds available to our Girl inside the computer itself – internal synthesizers to give a technical term. Sometimes the final refined version of an old school sound, satisfying in isolation, does not mix properly with the final refined version of the new school sound. Over the years, Lolita has discovered, through an iterative process, which elements in both old and new school sounds can be refined and highlighted such that there is a strong intersection of the sounds at the end, a good powerful mix.

In our creative life, in our approach even to mundane life, we have the opportunity to review, refine, extract deeper levels of meaning, find new and powerful connections between elements in our experience. This valuing of iteration, of reviewing the tried and true in our creative work, and in life generally, to always dive deeper, extract more meaning, discover and strengthen connections between what is old and what is new, is the daily ritual of the artist.

Lolita is grateful for this daily opportunity to dive deeper into tried and true routines, and to discover profound, often subtle connections between old and new in both her creative and mundane life.

spark on


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Posted by on July 20, 2011 in creative process


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