The Creative Process

In a world where we become increasingly reliant on our social media presence to determine our self-worth, it becomes exceedingly difficult to promote self-growth. 

( Alex Kondratiev)

It’s contradictory, sometimes it’s chaotic, flying at you from every angle till you burst with creativity. Sometimes it’s a quiet stillness; an idea comes from a seed over time. Sometimes it requires effort and sometimes it requires none. The one thing they all have in common is the inability to force it to happen. This is not to be mistaken with hard work and critical thought. Nor is it to be mistaken with forcing yourself to work. It is necessary to force yourself to work at times. Work to get to your desk, your instrument or just work to invest in anything emotionally. Creativity does not require work, it stems from the spirit. When you work to get up, you’re telling that part of you, “okay self I’m gonna feed my soul today.” It’s a subconscious transaction between you and yourself to commit to being, just that, yourself. 

In a world where we become increasingly reliant on our social media presence to determine our self-worth, it becomes exceedingly difficult to promote self-growth. 

Distractions are good. They are necessary to the creative process to recharge and allow the cogs of your subconscious to naturally fall into place. Procrastination is, I don’t want to say bad, but it’s not your best friend either. Procrastination can shine a light on your fears and insecurities. When you stop demonizing yourself for your lack of productivity and start asking why you are unproductive, you learn a lot about yourself. Not all of what you will learn is kind and may make you ashamed of the truths you find. A lot of self-growth and creativity, however, can come from this place. 

Understanding that the truths you encounter can evoke shame, only because those truths do not align with your own self-concept. This is the person you perceive yourself to be. You might perceive yourself to be a good person, but when you step outside your own perception, you realise others may not see you this way. Your behaviours have not aligned with your self-concept. 

( -Steve Johnson)

I say this as someone who struggles routinely, with my sense of self and creative blockages. I find that my creative block comes from a deeper sense of self I avoid. When I approach myself with the same empathy I’d approach a friend, I begin to accept and forgive my behaviours in order to allow honest thought within my art. 

In truth, most of my creative expression comes from an unawareness of self. A sense of giving over to thought and allowing it to tell me it’s story. I’ve written songs where only upon their completion, do I understand that absolute need to create that song. The mindset I was in that I wasn’t even consciously aware of. It forced me to face my own truths. In this way, we’re faced with another contradiction. Do you create art from emotion, or does art evoke emotion? For me, it can be both. 

There are times in my life, when what I want to say and what I think I should say contradict each other. This is enormously frustrating and exhausting. These moments create a blockage, wherein I am unable to communicate effectively and this leads to anger and outbursts. There is a saying that ‘the best use of imagination is creativity. The worst use of imagination is anxiety.’ 


It really is. It happens gradually, you don’t notice it happening, one day you realise you have to try to imagine. I think it’s partially to do with the world being so fucked up, you’d have thought someone couldn’t have written it and partially to do with your time being consumed by the hamster wheel of consumption. I mean, of course, the participation in modern-day society. Wherein our lives become transactional, we provide a good or service in return for a monetary reward by which we invest back into the said cycle of purchasing another good and/or service. Sometimes I think the economy is just gambling on a global scale. Except, you can get help for gambling. You can’t get off the wheel. 

I know I must come across as such a negative nelly and I can be. Of course, I can be, but I’m mainly a happy-go-lucky person. I choose to see all perspectives, wallow in misery for a moment and then feed the positive aspects of the narrative I’ve created – because ‘the best use of imagination is creativity. The worst use of imagination is anxiety.’ I’m not sure one can exist without the other. Maybe it can? 

( Ana Shvet)

My experience has been that anxiety can bring out the most beautiful forms of expression. That is not to glorify anxiety in any way. It is not pleasant to second guess your own existence at every moment and realises that you’ll be reminding yourself to think positively the rest of your life. It is exhausting and very real, but anxiety can lead to moments of connection unique in art.

Moments of expression, that express authentic understanding of the human experience. The reason it is special is because in moments of utter sadness, the most terrifying thought that is that we are entirely alone. Music reminds you at every point, you are never alone. There is always someone who relates that feeling of loneliness, has been there and somehow survived. There is hope in misery. While misery enjoys company, it does not have to exist in the dark spaces usually associated with this phrase. 

The creative process is something that can take you anywhere, at any one time. It can be magical and scary. Rewarding yet, soul-destroying. It is unique to each person and should be encouraged throughout your life. Money won’t leave your mark in the world, art will. When the most prolific people in the world had more money than they could spend, they made art in their image. They believed art immortalised them. 

Create more art, immortalise yourself. 

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