I've always enjoyed finding out about other people's creative processes. Each is so unique. I remember as a child watching my father do his carpentry work. It was incredible to me that a piece of furniture or a cabinet could emerge from pieces of wood. I liked watching him draw his designs and the incredible attention to detail he applied. It taught me the importance of having a good and solid plan before embarking on any endeavor. When blogging friend Leenie -- talented artist, writer, and photographer -- of the blog Side Trips answered the following questions on the creative process, I was intrigued. When she suggested I answer them, too, well, I couldn't resist. You have to check out Leenie's beautiful watercolor art,"Watercolors by Leenie". She's an amazing artist. I'm thrilled to have one of her original paintings hanging here in the office. The creative process:
What am I working on?
Currently, I am
finishing a short story for an anthology. I began this particular piece about
three days ago. I will finish editing it at some point today and send it along to the editor.
Photographically, I am
still adding to and finessing my new photography site as Spring seems reluctant
to grant us with her presence in our area. Inspiration for getting out to photograph is at
an all-time low. But I know it will soon be replaced with major highs when
Spring does show up in her finest blossom garb.
How does my work differ from others in my genre?
I think, after we're
sure of ourselves artistically, we all develop a unique voice. It shines
through when we relax and let it happen. I've been writing since I was a child
and, while I admire so many fantastic writers, I never wanted to emulate them.
I only wanted to have a distinct voice that was my own. It's taken decades to
get to the place where I know I'm writing from my own place and no one else's.
In photography, I
think perspective is so personal that even shooting the same thing,
photographers will always have areas they choose to focus on or expose in
totally different ways.
Why do I write/photograph what I do?
Characters sort of
reveal themselves to me. They refuse to stop bugging me until I take the time
to write something of them. Even a snippet will suffice when time constraints
prevent me from delving deeply.
Photography is much
the same. The day will be foggy or sunny, cold or windy…or the light will
beckon me outdoors. Ninety percent of my photography takes place outside. I
like exploring and finding the unexpected beauty around me in an ordinary day.
What is my writing/photography process like?
Once a story, poem or
novel has me in its grip, it's impossible for me not to make time (usually late
evening after work and family time when the house is quiet and the animals are
peaceful) to get the writing going full steam. I have been known to skip meals
when the muse is burning bright and my children learned from a young age that, when I was writing, they could tell me anything and I'd give them a
vague…"Uh huh…" I had to learn to tune back in case dire events were
transpiring. My favorite part of writing is the editing. I like whittling words
down or searching for just the right word. Any poem, story or novel I write,
whether published or private, is never fully finished. I always feel it can
still be honed.
When I'm out shooting
(with camera, no guns), I am known to be a wee bit distracted. Just ask the
tree I bumped into last week. Not knowing it was a tree, I immediately
apologized. I'm sure the tree was grateful for the apology regardless. The
delight of photography is getting home and getting the photos onto the computer
where you can see if what you wanted to capture is really there or not. Again,
much like with writing, the editing process is fun. I like the fine-tuning of
photography. It's impossible for me to go anywhere without seeing something and
thinking, "Oh, I'd like to shoot that." I rarely leave home without a
camera. Too many times I've missed a great photographic moment so now I'm
almost superstitious about missing one…convinced if I leave a camera behind,
some magnificent moment will surely be missed.
Any of my amazing creative blogging friends want to answer these questions, I would be delighted to read about your creative process. It's not limited to writing or photography, but encompasses all the creative things we do in a day.