“All artists have to be slightly compulsive…slightly delusional.” – Marilyn Minter
If you don’t want your creative work to get stale, you have to keep evolving your process, right? Right. So, along with streamlining my interior and wardrobe space this summer, one of my major goals is to totally fuck up my creative habits, hopefully for the better.
I’ve been especially itching to get back to using my hands in whatever way possible, rather than simply typing away into the abyss of the Internet. I want to revisit writing with a pen again, journaling as often as possible, doodling and drawing, trying out new mediums (pottery is number one right now), getting messy and staining lots of old clothes, listening to new types of music and allowing myself to dance in my apartment freely to them like I did when I was younger, without any self-judgment regarding how absolutely ridiculous I might look. I want to go out dancing more too—and no, not to the alcohol-poisoned lairs of the Herve Leger set, but to bars with live music (jazz, salsa, etc.).
New vibes, new feelings, new finds, new new new new everything and anything that I can get my hands on.
I love writing, but I also used to spend a lot of time working with art forms that were more abstract, such as painting and fashion illustration, and I’m excited to get back to them. Words will always be my main man, but I figure a few mistresses can only fuel the former’s fire. And I also think there’s something to be said for engaging in processes that you’re not textbook “good” at, a category which painting and illustration definitely fall under for me. I can’t render reality perfectly on the page with a paintbrush, but does that mean I should avoid trying altogether?
I don’t want to merely be creative in the obvious ways, either, but in every sphere possible—whether it be how I arrange my apartment, the foods I’m trying, the places I’m visiting, the conversations I’m having, etc. We get so stuck in our day-to-day motions that we forget how every single second is an opportunity to do something differently, to heighten your experience, to challenge yourself, etc. I want to be running towards the new and uncomfortable, rather than hiding in the cozy corners of my routine.
A few things in particular will be fueling this process for me, the first being this wonderful short film directed by Pablo Ganglui and Tomas Auksas which features twenty artists and cultural figures discussing what inspires their creativity and what creativity means to them…
Next is a recent music discovery that I had a visceral reaction to at 4am yesterday. The band is called Jungle and for whatever reason their tunes moved me (move me) more than anything I’ve heard in maybe years. I plan to put my headphones on and turn their stuff up as loud as possible whenever I need a little creative boost. You can’t really go wrong with them, but here are two favorites: “Busy Earnin‘” and “Lucky I Got What I Want”.
And if that’s not your jam, I bet this will be. It is the most beautiful music video I’ve seen in a while and if it doesn’t make you want to simultaneously dance and cry, we probably don’t have a lot in common.
Finally, and perhaps most important, is coffee. I am shamelessly obsessed with the effect coffee has on my creativity—you could call it a full-blown addiction, although I only drink about two cups a day, and before noon at that. Nevertheless, I don’t think it would be exaggerating to say I live for the way it makes me feel—similar to an epic long run. I’ll be French-pressing ‘til the day I die.
So, THAT SAID: I dare you to put your Netflix, Google deep diving, apps on apps on apps, etc. on the backburner and join me in getting as creatively weird as possible, off-screen, using the hands that your mommas and poppas so kindly gave you.
Image c/o French lady, Jeanne Damas