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.


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