The Trial and Error of Craft

I am not at a loss for ideas. There are some days when they just hit me. I feel the glow of excitement, my brain runs at a million miles per hour and I can’t wait to begin.


This is called the “art" of an idea. It’s the most exciting part of the creative process. You know exactly what you want to make, but then responsibilities such as school or work get in the way, and soon enough your idea just rests in the pile of other unused ideas, never to see its fruition.


It’s the artist who understands the “craft” that makes the magic happen. Every successful artist figures this out somehow. They figure out how to move past the idea into the mundane of writing the song, building the story or shooting the video. They understand that some days they need a day off, some days they just need to sit down and work for an hour and some days they will go through draft after draft or edit after edit until they have no energy left.


Some people come up with five ideas and give up on each one. When you’ve given up on the first five things that you’ve started, it may not be that they are bad ideas, you may just lack the discipline and craft. Experienced artists know when a project is dead and when they are just being lazy.


They work through the failures to create success.


That takes a lot of self-discipline and it takes a lot of planning to get the craft of the work done. But when an artist figures out their craft, their process, then that framework gives them the freedom they need to be creative.


It wasn’t always this easy for me. My craft took some trial and error. But when I realized that I didn’t have to complete a whole project in one day, that my process was like a puzzle where I could finish a segment, then come back to it again, I learned that I liked to create more and more.


Don’t compare your process to another artist’s process. In fact, don’t compare your art to someone else's art. Your process produces your art, and that’s worth pursing.