Creative Cycle: Chipping Away

07 Aug

There is a cycle point in our creative work which feels a little like groping in the dark.  We have thought the deep thoughts, conceived the great concept, made essential creative choices about mediums and genres, expanded our knowledge base with new learning.  Now we are executing.  We are transforming from the conceptual to the concrete.  We are dabbing at the canvas, pecking at the keyboard, recording, editing, chipping away.

Much to our chagrin, given our natural inclination towards anything that instantly gratifies, what lies before us in that newborn physical realm is an unformed, unrefined, unpolished mass.  It seems we return day after day to this unfinished slab.  We harbor some doubts at this point about the viability of our project, about our own abilities to effectively execute our concept, about our capacity for patient daily effort to make the transformation from thought to substance complete.  And in the execution itself, there is a difficult process of discovering what works.

This phase of execution can feel a bit like walking through a dark tunnel.  Our self doubts block the light of hope.  The search for the effective elements of execution, of transforming concept into a concrete form, also feels like groping in the dark.  To create the new, we need to discover, or rediscover in our work the effective elements of execution.

Our Composer of Music for Art is in the middle of this execution phase, this cyclical point of searching, discovering, chipping away at the slab every day.  She is familiar now, after so many years, with the tugging in the middle of her belly, that anxiousness to complete, to enjoy the sharing.

And she has made friends with this tugging.  She has transformed this anxiety, this desire to reach the finish line.  She redirects the energy invested in wishing for the end.  She invests that energy into the execution process itself.  She has come to value that these moments of transforming concept to concrete as some of the most precious, gratifying moments of her creative cycle, her life as an artist.  For during these days of executing, we are most fully connected with our Partner in this ongoing process of creation.  It is an existential moment which we can learn to savor, as we master the intensity of this connection.

Take deep breaths.  Walk your dog, your muse, for a little while longer, and value this very special time in your process.  Sooner than you think you will see a beautiful new work coming into focus.  And sooner than you think you will be sharing and enjoying some feedback, some recognition.  And sooner than you think you will be chomping on the bit to start a new project – and return again to the beginning of the creative cycle which defines your life as an artist.

spark on!


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Posted by on August 7, 2012 in creative cycle


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