Essay / Maddy McLean

I Watched a Two-Minute Vimeo Video For My Creativity Class And It Blew My Mind

 Sometimes you see something on the internet that matters. It’s rare, but it happens.A pretty cool visualization of an audio clip I watched recently fits the bill.

Essentially, the video was about how every person goes through this “creative gap”, or a time in their life when nothing you are making or producing or designing is very good even though you still have “”killer” taste. And to be honest, I didn’t even realize this is something that I’ve personally experienced until I watched this video.

Have you ever looked back at a poem you wrote years ago, or something you painted when you were younger, or even an old profile picture and thought “what was I thinking, this is terrible”? Well I think that’s what this video was talking about. All of us get into creative work, and at the time, you think it’s great and you really are putting forth your best effort, but in the long run it really just isn’t good. In fact, most of the time it’s actually really rather bad.

Ira Glass – of NPR’s This American Life fame – noted that when people realize this, that when they look back and realize they are stuck in this gap, they quit. They freak out and they think they’re never going to be able to create anything worthwhile and they quit because their work is a disappointment to them. And I understand why people quit – there is no worse feeling than finding your own work disappointing – but it is important to work to close that gap.

Work, a lot. Do a lot of work, work on a lot of things. Write every day, draw every day, take a picture every day. It’s important to go through a volume of work because in going through a volume of work, you are gaining experience, learning how to express your “killer taste” and have more creative pieces to choose from and be proud of.

“It takes a while,” Glass says at the end of the video. “And it’s normal to take a while. And you just have to fight your way through that, okay?”

Okay.

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