Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Dangers of Braining

I have a problem. When I'm in the midst of creative fury, I often can't get anything done. The problem is when I get too deep in my own thoughts I stop existing in the real world. I call it "Braining", and it's my worst enemy for productivty. It usually goes like this - I'm working, I reach a step that brings my mind elsewhere, and 30 minutes later I realize I've been pacing back & forth spending time in my own brain instead of working.
In many ways it's not such a bad thing. I mean, it's sort of a pure creative act, fast paced conceptualizing of idea after idea. Admittedly some if not all of my best ideas are born this way. So you might say that braining is actually an important part of my creative process. I know this, which is why I often allow myself to brain more than I should, because I tell myself it's okay to let my mind wander endlessly because I'm creating, and it just feels right. The problem is that it's so easy and enjoyable to live inside your own head that the real world (and the task at hand) takes a back seat to the conceptual world. Which is all well and good, but at the end of the day what do you have to show for it? I may have spent my afternoon coffee's energy throwing around some great notions and made some terrific growth, but if I walk away empty handed then I've failed at the one thing I know I should have been doing - making paintings.