Sometimes it’s awkward when people find out I can draw. I usually end up sounding like a jerk because I have a hard time answering people’s questions. It might be because it’s something that is very personal to me. Or it might be because I never learned how to sugarcoat some things.
An inevitable part of having a creative mind is hitting creative blocks every once in a while. They can last for days, weeks, sometimes months. I’m actually in the middle of one as I attempt this blog entry for the 11th time this week. I figured that writing about would help me complete it, but it has become something of a catch-22. I still can’t write anything!
When I hit a wall, I go through some variation of a Kübler-Ross model, otherwise known as the five stages of grief.
The first stage is denial. It’s a defense mechanism for my threatened ego. I’m a creative professional; I can’t POSSIBLY be having a creative block right now. I’m so good at being creative, I pay my bills with it! Nope, not me. I’m all creative, all the time.
The second stage is anger, which stems from the realization that my denial can’t go on forever. This is the dumbest stage of the whole stupid thing and I don’t even care anymore, I HATE THIS BLOG, STOP READING IT, YOU JUDGMENTAL TURD.
The third stage is bargaining. I promise I’ll finish this paragraph later if you just pretend there was one here in the first place. I’m just going to copy and paste this twice to make it look longer. The third stage is bargaining. I promise I’ll finish this paragraph later if you just pretend there was one here in the first place. I’m just going to copy and paste this twice to make it look longer.
The next stage is depression. It’s filled mostly with fear and regret. My biggest regret is writing about creative blocks with a creative block. My biggest fear is rereading this thing once I finish it. Why bother finishing it? It’s not even that good, so what’s the point?
The final stage is acceptance. This is where I can finally move on. This is also the step I should have just skipped to in the first place. Sometimes you just can’t avoid a creative block. You need to face it because it won’t go away on its own. You can either figure some clever way to get around it or just muscle through with brute force. And you shouldn’t worry about producing something from the whole experience. You don’t always need something to show for it or else you end up with weird, rambling blogs of frustration. Tackle a creative block for your own self-improvement.
Standing awkwardly between art and design, there is illustration.
Art is the wiser, older brother of Illustration. He is often mimicked by his younger brother, but he is simply too unique to be duplicated. He is intense and engaging, interacting with viewers on a personal level. Each interaction happens only once, and from those interactions, countless discussions are to be had.
Illustration strives to be as visually brilliant as his older brother, but is decidedly clearer in his message. While Art can be interpreted in more ways than one, Illustration is simply understood. Art is felt; Illustration is read.
Design is the hip, younger brother of Illustration. He has learned a lot from his older brother, but is determined to carve his own path and be recognized as a separate entity. He is practical and pragmatic, calculated in approach and deliberate in communication. He is often critical of Illustration, but never hesitates to accept his aid.
Illustration is proud of his younger brother and happy to work alongside him, but favors fun and creativity over deliberation. They share many traits, but are exceedingly different in execution. Both have a strong desire to communicate a clear message and can do so in more than one way, but Illustration will be more dramatic in presentation. Design answers; Illustration riddles.
Illustration is the clichéd middle brother between art and design, but is an indispensable member of the family of communication.[signoff][/signoff]