When last we spoke, we discussed what, in essence, sets good creative apart from bad creative, and the best, most useful steps on how to reach the former. That process is a much simpler affair than what we are about to delve into today, though the two are intrinsically linked. Bear with me–we may get a little sappy.
We are all professionals and as such we constantly strive to better ourselves in our line of work. It’s important to have our fingers on the pulse at all times but, as a creative team lead, it’s also important to indulge in your ‘out side of work’ self. It can be easy to write off extra curricular activities as time wasters (and an easy excuse to tell yourself that you need the come-down time), but by being in touch with yourself–you are at your best. Why is this important? That answer is a few fold, one of which we will answer now. When you are at your purest mind, your best ideas flow freely. You gain a certain clarity that allows you to truly step away and ask yourself ‘why’ with some perspective. This will save you and your team time by weeding out ideas that potentially meet the cutting room floor before they have the chance to. For me, it’s always been about feeding the pure artist. As my background is rooted in performance art, my primary insatiable appetite is fed by theater.
Why theater? It’s the most revealing form of art. When an actor is on stage, everything in life is on the floor for the world to see. When he embodies another human being, he forces himself to look at life through a different lens–to experience the world through someone else’s perspective. He begins to strip away everything that he knew previously. To see the world through someone else’s eyes is to have understanding. It takes incredible work to truly grasp another’s human experience. But that’s it. That’s what sets apart a good actor from a serviceable one. As such, the relationship between a performer and an audience member is the most intimate romance, sweetest dance, and darkest secret (I told you we’d get sappy). As the person orchestrating that relationship, all eyes are on him–people hanging on every word.
We’ve now arrived at the second part of the previously aforementioned two-fold answer. This practice, the ability to understand someone else’s perspective, is key to our topic–elevating the creative mind. The above-mentioned relationship is precisely what we do in the office. By getting in touch with something deeper, that’s when we our creative juices are flowing the smoothest. Theater may not be your choice of avenue, but the takeaway from it all is this: stop, think, experience, change your perspective, live in someone else’s world for a moment, orchestrate the relationship between head and heart (and client and product, respectively) and know that, most of all, it takes time. When you can grasp this, no creative problem will seem out of reach.