Like a dope piece of art, many things combine to create something magical!
What does it mean to be a CREATIVE? I’ve struggled for a long time to define myself as such, and as a result got a late start at what I consider to be my calling. So, I’ll ask the question again.
What does it mean to be a CREATIVE?
It means fear, self doubt, going with your gut, knowing your self, being passionate, struggle, and so much more. It means not being afraid to fail but learning from it. It means listening and being aware of the world and people around you. How else do you expect to get inspiration? It means knowing that your brain works different and it’s a beautiful thing. It also means that everyone will not like you (or your work) and everyone will not understand. Some people simply WILL. NOT. GET. IT. and will ultimately not get you.
AND THAT’S O.K!
I’m a filmmaker, a visual storyteller, and in my medium the creative process can sometimes be very collaborative. In the beginning stages of my creative journey the word “collaboration” scared me. Maybe scared isn’t the best way to describe it but I was very, Very, VERY uneasy about it. My ideas were mine and I didn’t want to bring other people in on them for two reasons.
Firstly, I wanted control. I was scared of people hijacking my idea and having to deal with conflict. I didn’t want to compromise on my creativity. Secondly, what kind of creative was I if I needed other people’s help with MY creativity. I had this warp sense of what the creative process entailed. If I couldn’t come up with the great ideas all on my own then really, how talented was I? Of course through growth and exposure I started to realize that all great ideas are brought to life through collaboration, just with the right minds.
I would come across people who were doing great things and producing great work, but instead of thinking of ways to team up with them to create magic, I envied them. I can even say I was a little intimidated. I wanted to do exactly what they were doing but somehow I always fell short. The ideas flowed so naturally but the execution lacked and I hated that. I started to realize that those people made great connections with people around them, and used those connections to make their ideas come to life.
I already knew this. I knew what it would take to get things done but fear has a way of grasping you at your core, leaving you paralyzed. Your brain knows exactly what you need to do, but your body gets stuck. I needed to talk to people.
TALK TO PEOPLE…
Not my strongest trait (at least that’s what I made myself believe). I also needed to trust people more. Graduating undergrad and moving on to grad school, I learned how to do just that. I found the courage to actually start sharing my ideas and talking about all the projects that in my deepest of hearts I couldn’t wait to bring to life, but I knew how colossal they all were. That held me back. The anxiety of setting out to do these seemingly enormous projects would set in, allowing self doubt and procrastination to dictate my life. You can dream all day about the things you want most but it’s the action that follows that will get you there.
I started meeting people who were on the same creative wave length as me. I slowly began to realize just how amazing I was. Here I am interacting with these brilliant creatives, and they get excited when I speak. They’re eager to work on my projects. How crazy it was for me to think that they actually considered me to be as amazing and brilliant as them. What a confidence boost and I thank my tribe everyday for it.
When I actually started collaborating with people on various types of projects, I found the process to be so fulfilling. I loved it, ACTUALLY loved it. I loved the new ideas and the new perspectives. The way each new thought had the potential to take an idea from cool, to good, to GREAT. Seeing the same passion you possess pouring out of others in the middle of a brainstorming session, what an experience. Most of all, I love, Love, LOVE all the new and amazing ideas that come from these meetings. Leaving me with creative partners that I will continue to grow with throughout my career.
To all those (especially my fellow creatives and artists) who are hesitant to reach out and collaborate with someone, don’t be. Take the leap and I promise it will aid you in your creative growth. We’ve all had the horrible group project experience but I promise you, you will find more positive interactions than negative.
Every experience is a learning opportunity. Learn from each other and let your creativity soar to new heights.
Let me know about some of your dope collaborating experiences and if possible drop a link to the project. I’d love to check it out.
Reach out and say HEY!