Creative Process: Control and Spontaneity

01 Jan

Lolita was always a bit of a control freak.  After all, she comes from good German stock, which assigns no small amount of value to order, system, consistency and discipline.

a German mother sits daughter on lap for a piano lesson in a well-ordered hourse

Lolita enjoyed a good, orderly German upbringing

Needless to say, Lolita brings this passion for order, good planning, a systematic approach to work and life, into her creative process.  In the early stages of a new project, our beloved Composer of Music for Art spends a great deal of time thinking about what she wants to create, what she wants to express, how the finished product will sound, and what visual art the finished product will accompany.

All this pre-game is very much for the good.  When Lolita gets down to the brass tacks of defining, developing, combining musical elements – she is working off of a strong conceptual foundation.  This clarity of concept nurtures a strong creative flow in the initial execution stages.  Choices for scales, harmonies, instruments, tempos, all flow steadily.  There is not a lot of second guessing.

But something disconcerting often occurs when Lolita starts bringing elements together.  The results are not altogether what she intends – sometimes in fact very much unintended.  Have you ever experienced this?  You start off trying for one thing, and get something very different?  Even if that very different something is pretty cool – there can still be a sense of frustration that we wandered off track somehow.  There can be a sense of lost control, which for our Girl, at least, can be disconcerting.  And certainly if we are commissioned to write an uplifting fanfare and we come up with a funeral dirge – we may need to return to the drawing board to achieve product that meets client requirements.  On the other hand, we might recognize, should recognize, that unexpectedly, we came up with a truly magnificent funeral dirge!

What occurred to transform intended fanfare into funeral dirge ? Part of the answer might relate to the notion that we are not alone in this creative process.  We have a Creative Partner.  As artists we have the unique ability to channel G-d’s Creative Energy through us.  These are moments of self-nullification.  We abdicate perceived or actual control over our work, and allow for spontaneity to drive us in potentially unexpected directions.  Spontaneity is in effect letting the Creator take the driver’s seat.  We become the vehicle rather than the driver.

In the early years Lolita was somewhat resistant to this natural experience of the artist during creative work.  But with Deuce’s spiritual guidance and

a wise old spaniel offers spiritual perspective

Deuce teaches Lolita to yield control to the Creator

encouragement, Lolita has loosened up quite a bit, and the Creative Energy, her spontaneity in creative work, is a powerful ingredient in bringing projects to successful, if unexpected, conclusions.

Lolita hopes that you will continue to discover and value this gift of spontaneity, this ability to channel the Creator’s energy through you during your creative process.  She wants to assure you that your careful planning, your daily discipline, continues to be your foundation, what enables you to reach these higher experiential levels in your work.

And she blesses you (as does Deuce) for a New Year filled with good work, sharing, much deserved recognition, financial reward, and love.

spark on!



Posted by on January 1, 2013 in creative process


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

7 responses to “Creative Process: Control and Spontaneity

  1. J.H. White

    January 3, 2013 at 2:26 am

    I think the creative process is more collaborative than channeling but perhaps this is just semantics. Love your articles.

    • midisparks

      January 3, 2013 at 5:56 pm

      if we were work mostly alone, in what way is the process collaborative?

  2. lindagwhite

    January 7, 2013 at 10:41 am

    Love this post, your thoughts about spontaneity and control. I often find myself beginning something in a focus way, I know what I want to say, where I think I’m going, only to find myself moving elsewhere, ending somewhere totally different from where I began. If I were too controlled and failed to give myself the freedom to explore, the spark of spontaneity that gives a piece its life, might be lost. And to answer midisparks, I believe part of the “collaborative” process comes about with our interactions with the different ways we think about, interpret, and process the things around us – at least in part.

    • midisparks

      January 7, 2013 at 11:16 am

      look forward to reading your articles. good to know there is a community out there thinking about creative process and life.

    • midisparks

      January 7, 2013 at 11:19 am

      i am totally psyched about your notion of collaboration! (and in agreement 100%). i had a feeling that was where you were going, but I needed the confirmation. thanks very much for that, and for your feedback on the “spontaneity and control” post.

  3. J.H. White

    January 23, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    Ah, Midisparks….I’m new to wordpress and just found the link that returns to “comments made” to see I missed this dialogue and your answering question……many musings on creative collaboration, particularly while working in solitude. Probably a better idea for a post. Hmmm. Back at you soon.


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