Monday, January 21, 2008

Poor Blog

Poor blog, I feel I have been neglecting you in the excitement of the group project beginning.

Luckily I have something I want to talk about.
As I'm sure everybody knows, being an artist is hard sometimes. We've all had the 'Emo days' where you can't bear to look at your own work because you're convinced everyone in the world is better than you. It doesn't help when you're living with people who are on the same course as you either, as you have a direct comparison.
But you also have the days where you are so full of yourself you almost can't believe it. You've just finished something, it's awesome, everybody loves it, you're an art GOD.
But most of the time you have to live somewhere in the middle, caught between putting yourself down and bigging yourself up. You have to have some sort of ego going on, otherwise you'd never produce anything, but you also have to be self critical so you don't get complacent.

I can't seem to find a middle ground very easily. It's so easy to yo-yo between the two extremes and I doubt it's particularly healthy. My up days are pretty rare anyway. Pretty much as soon as I finish a project I worry I won't be able to do anything that interesting ever again. I have no idea where my creativity comes from and my method seems to simply be to work like blazes, which surely anyone could do?

But I seem to need to stress to drive myself onwards, and I am constantly striving to do better. We'll see how this translates into the group project work.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Some attempt at wrapping things up

So what have I learned about creativity? While perhaps not directly related to the blog tasks, I've learned that creativity requires hard work. Both Jolyon Webb and Ben Mathis demonstrated their knowledge of pretty much everything, with special focus on anatomy and traditional drawing techniques. While being good at the area you're being creative in isn't strictly a requirement, having a broad base knowledge can make combinational creativity easier, and is essential for explorational creativity.

At least at the end of all this, I have found a definition of creativity that I agree with.
'Creativity is the ability to come up with ideas that are new, surprising and valuable'
Although most of these words need to be further defined, it at least does make immediate sense. It can also be further broken down into types of creativity: combinational, explorational and transformational as explained in my post about the lectures.

I've had a scan back and it seems that a lot of my blog posts end up looking at the idea of process behind creativity. Whether a process is creative or not, (eg cooking) what steps you can add to a process to enhance creativity (like limitations) or even where creativity occurs in a process as mentioned in the lectures.

I do feel like I understand my own creativity a little better. Everything is a process, beginning with a brief with contrainsts.
I don't think creativity is easy, it's something you have to work at. When I do a project for drawing, I don't go with my first idea. For the one day projects and the speed paints I've had to, and I think some of them have been pretty good, but I think they lack the depth of my formal projects. With both the mechanical and the organic projects I had an idea about mid way through which I could have gone with as my final concept. But in both cases either I decided it wasn't good enough, or was frankly told by Chris that it wasn't good enough, so I returned to the drawing board.

I often think about the process of coming up with a character or making your way towards a final outcome. So many ideas are rejected along the way, and a lot of them aren't actually bad, it's just that I decide to go with a different one. How many outcomes would I end up with if I actually went back over a project and followed every variation through?

I think my creativity works because I constantly churn out work. Even if most of it is useless, by the law of averages I'm still likely to find something worth using. Looking back on things, all I seem to do is go one way, find something I like, then go another way, find something else I like, and simply splice the two things together. Unfortunately this process can be a little frustrating while in the midst of it, because it feels like I'm wandering aimlessly until I find the elements I want to staple together.