I’ve been down for a long, long, looong time now and I’m feeling dried up creatively. And since I’m in the stage where I feel my self-worth (and work) depends heavily on my productivity, this drying up leads to losing all the positivity I have left. (I’m definitely negatively channeling The Secret right now)
So I skimmed my life in search of when I was creatively ‘flourishing’ and then bam! 4 months of my Junior Term Abroad in Singapore a few years back. It was absolute creative freedom! (Well not quite, I had a handful of group projects, reports and exams, but I enjoyed them too). I wasn’t afraid of anything, except getting deported, so I really immersed myself in that moment.
I walked anywhere and everywhere. Discovered a lot of places only by walking. Being in a different country, particularly a ‘safe’ one, was just liberating. Also, I checked out a bunch of museums there. At that time Singapore Art Museum was featuring Filipino art and History plus some Ateneo Art Gallery work which of course made me so proud. I also spent time researching and reading stories of designers that immensely inspired me. I got super attached to Stefan Sagmeister’s stories (more of this awesome designer here) that I bought his Made You Look book and went on a crazy-dangerous* backpacking trip to Bali, Indonesia.
*THIS crazy: a run down, straight-outta-thriller-movie motel room
I also had a couple of crazy moments such as staying in school ‘til 3am and taking crazing jump shots with Theia.
And did a hand-drawn poster with hundreds of sticky notes, which I ditched the night before the project submission.
And a weird moment when I took home a couple of twigs.
Took a Postmodern theater class, played the role of the Tree in our Giving Tree final production, with these awesome people.
I just couldn’t fully describe the whole experience. It was surreal, free, fun, crazy, whatever. It greatly helped me with my creative thinking. There I first had a glimpse of my future book featured here. So I guess the creative freedom I got there was useful after all.
So what now? I couldn’t just dwell on the past and think that I’ve passed my prime, still too early for that. Right now I’m living in the ‘real world’, which reminds me that everything I do has a consequence. If I do well, I get more; if I don’t, I lose. I’ve becom scared of, being too crazy, thinking out of the box, and well, making mistakes.
That clearly dried me up and burned me out.
So here’s my challenge: To do something out of my comfort zone, something crazy, or risky everyday and document it. An everyday shock can take me out of this creative drought. I hope I won’t be too scared to start it tomorrow. :))