Creative block

This seems to be a “trend­ing topic”. Just read about seven tips by Mark McGuin­ness to avoid Cre­ative Block (yes, cap­ti­tal­ized) and went on to look what I had writ­ten to Alex Cor­nell two years ago when he asked me “What do you do to inspire your cre­ativ­ity when you are in a rut?”

I sent my answer in a short email, with­out think­ing about it too much, men­tion­ing only six strate­gies. I have since added a sev­enth. BTW: Alex is writ­ing a book about the topic, to be pub­lished soon by Prince­ton Archi­tec­tural Press.

I have seven strate­gies for this situation:

1. Avoid
Do some­thing else, wash the car, back-up your data, do errands…

2. Think
Sit back and think about the issue, just let your mind go…

3. Research
Look up stuff, go through your old projects, but avoid Google — it takes too long to find any­thing useful…

4. Col­lect
We all have lots of stuff; there must be some­thing in there that is wait­ing to be used…

5. Sketch
Draw­ing is great, even if you have no tal­ent. Just visu­al­is­ing the sim­plest things makes them come alive…

6. Decon­struct
Take the prob­lem apart, look at the parts and then put them back together…

7. Talk
Find some­body to talk to. I can­not really think unless I talk, and as I do, ideas come up.

I have uploaded a lit­tle brochure from the series that we pub­lish at Eden­spiek­er­mann now and again. This one fea­tures the essay by Hein­rich Kleist “On the grad­ual com­ple­tion of thoughts dur­ing speech”. The brochure has the text in Ger­man and Eng­lish, and the lan­guages start at either end of the printed piece. The PDF, there­fore, needs to be turned around to read it prop­erly in English.

8 comments

  1. Hi Erik,

    I couldn’t find the PDF you men­tioned, con­tain­ing the Hein­rich Kleist essay…

    Thanks,

    Pedro

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