The Creative Process

Just back from the St. John’s International Women’s Festival and seeing all kinds of films sparked thoughts on knowing your creative process.

One of the films was Koop, a documentary on Winnipeg artist Wanda Koop.

The filmmakers took her on a boat in the St. Lawrence where she could sketch impressions for her large landscape pieces. In watching the film, I was reminded of the four stages (perhaps not quite as linear) of the creative process – the prep, the incubation process, illumination and verification.

The documentary showed Koop preparing to go on the trip -her hesitation about leaving her cat and the instructions she needed to be on the ship.

Being on the boat gives her plenty of incubation time and space to draw impressions of the land along the St. Lawrence. And then there is one scene where you can see it on her face, she’s ready to begin the process of committing her vision onto the canvas.

That illumination isn’t without its doubts. Although she’s an accomplished artist, she still feels overwhelmed at the beginning and has doubts about her abilities to bring her vision to fruition. Those expressions of doubt are what we all need to work through to create.

We need time time we feel we own and the space to create. Comedian, John Cleese emphasizes the importance of drawing boundaries so that you can be creative.

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