Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Jonah Asks about Process

 Jonah asks:
"I was just curious about your personal approach as a creative towards developing an abstract idea and constructing an outline into a complex, detailed, finished product. I'm not a visual artist, but I'm currently a college student who enjoys producing electronic music as a hobby."

Hi, Jonah,
My approach varies depending on whether the final product is an illustrated book, a video, a magazine article, or a single painting.

For example, my step-by-step process for painting a realistic image of an imaginary scene is outlined in my book Imaginative Realism, and it involves research, sketches, maquettes, models, and photo references, all completed before I attempt the final painting.

I've found that following these planning steps leads to the best results and saves time. More importantly, taking all those steps helps me through moments of doubt that inevitably accompany the middle stages of creating something. Almost every project goes through a phase where it looks ugly or trite or uninspired. Having a process, and trusting it, keeps me on track and gives me the best chance to deliver on the potential of the original idea.

I'm not sure what the process is for creating electronic music, but if you haven't already done so, I'm sure you'll figure it out. Study the process of the electronic musicians you admire, and follow it until you have developed your own methods.


Timothy Bollenbaugh said...

James, your ¶ 3 description of "middle steps" accompanies nearly, if not all, projects regardless of age and experience. As you know! And every person needs to hear it frequently throughout life. Especially potent from someone like you. Wonderful that it's posted to refer to as desired. And, it goes to show, everyone needs to keep fundamentals and advice close at hand, to stand on each time.

Timothy Bollenbaugh said...

P.S: When not in our design department I catalog for the music library, and from each take note of references to music from artists, directors, and musicians. Music references are full of procedures, definitions, and descriptions based on visual...and as often vv. Definitely interdisciplinary, especially generally, each departing with its own specialized terminology.

So Jonah, maybe keep both in hand and the correlation in mind when setting up your projects. Consider ways to adapt one for the other.