“If the muses arrive, let them catch you working”
I am not going to be the one to contradict the master Picasso. Not much less, but have you ever had a revelation -probably the most important of your lives- in the bathroom? “Honey, don’t open the door, but write this down: [insert revealing idea that the next day will seem a little crazy and of questionable quality]”. The one of ideas that I have lost because, on the border between genius and REM phase, I have decided not to get out of bed and write down what was happening in my head.
I personally agree with Picasso that, for ideas to come (the good ones), you should be working on them. Only if you are shaping the clay, in the style of Sam and Molly in Ghost, will you be able to make a beautiful vase (an old Chinese proverb about design and pottery). But, what to do with that project that crosses your mind and that, no matter how many times you give it, there is no way to get something decent out of it?
Well, if I had the ultimate solution to this problem, I’d be giving TED talks and probably wouldn’t have a mouthful of doritos. But since that is not the case at the moment, I share with you my “Emergency plan for timid ideas that do not want to come out”. Before starting, I want to point out that each creative process is different, like each person (and that topic would be for another post) and it may not work for everyone, but knowing resources from different people will not hurt us, right?
The Emergency Plan for Shy Ideas that Don’t Want to Come Out
In my case, when I am usually lacking in inspiration, it is due to having times of more overwhelm/stress, more projects or less timing, so, basically, I try to be organized in my projects and times so as not to have to run for the last one. Schwarzenegger-style Turboman and run out.
Another thing I try to do is look at references. Not only design (in fact, my references are not usually design). I LOVE video game art books and how they deal with photography in series/movies (have you noticed in the first season of The Witcher that there are scenes where almost everything is -exaggeratedly- out of focus except the main character? It’s strange because I don’t it’s noticeable but there it is).
Now, if the lock comes to me working on the project, I release it. I try, as far as possible, to move on to something totally different. Release my brain from that point of tension for a long time. Leave that idea in the bottom drawer and take it out the next day.
And, in the extreme case where none of the above works, I have some teammates with ideas worth their weight in gold, so I explain the project/task to them, show them what I’ve worked on, and let them do it accordingly. judges. If you get stuck, ask for help, it usually works. The same ideas that they give you are not 100% useful, but you will have other points of view (referents) that can give a boost to your work.
Cheer up and go for them!