I work in many different ways and enjoy reexamining the ways I work and asking why. I am not here to tell you how to make micro to-do lists, turn off distractions, and run your creative practice. I will talk about a way I have observed my process to help make me work/design in different manners.
One thing that I found powerful, is what I am going to call single-tasking. Most of us probably know what multi-tasking is, and I personally think it’s more fantasy than reality. I still try and do many things at once, often getting very little done.
We may all know that when you are only doing one thing it’s easier to concentrate, more efficient/conserves energy, fewer mistakes, higher quality, less stressful, more fun, easier to reach flow state, and you can have better retention/clarity around the subject matter. Overall, more productive - but how does this work within the creative process?
Sky Peace. Reimagination for Yoko Ono
I find it hard to focus in many situations, especially after getting covid, but ironically one of my most difficult scenarios is when I don’t have a lot of work. I assume it’s because I don’t have “real” end goals to accomplish. It’s fun and important to wander with no set goal or objective, but when I am trying to finish a project I need to establish ways of working (process). One task is a collection of a lot of small tasks and giving ourselves space for each aspect will bring great returns. I will break down a few ways I do this.
When starting a project, I only work in a text app (no visual) for creative concepts and a sketchbook to develop visual ideas. When I work on logos I am trying to capture the most expressive, thoughtful, and basic shape I can draw - then figure out later how to embellish, if needed. I only design layouts in black and white, often picking the fonts beforehand. If it doesn’t work in black and white, it won’t in color. If I have to break up space I use grey boxes. I pick color while looking at the objectives for the project.
All of these steps help me focus solely on the subject matter, image, and color. Now I can figure out if they all relate. Do they? Reexamine. I have found this has opened space for me to be more creative and efficient.
I am curious if you have any hacks to your process and what they are? Please feel free to share and thanks for reading.
Links: Cina Associates, Cina Process, Cina Art, Public Type
First, thank you for sharing a little detail piece of your creative process. That’s something I found hard to pass along when someone ask me about that. One of my biggest challenge on starting a project is overthinking about the final result beforehand, I mean, creating previous expectations on how the idea will be manifested in reallity. Usually that creates a little barrier in my head causing a spark anxiety feeling which turns down the excitement of doing. I figured that my creative process needs to start like a jam session or warm up. Anyway, I’m keep improving my ways to break the blank canvas syndrome.
Thank you for sharing this sneak peek into your process. The black and white layout explorations are definitely something I’ll try to reduce early-on decision making that I usually toil with for too long.