Back in March 2016, I started an internship at the local Public Health office in town. Since starting, I’ve had the opportunity to contribute on a variety of projects, such as creating print materials for health promotion. I’ve loved the challenges that each project provides. In particular, I’m learning how to effectively communicate the information at hand in a visual format. In reflection of these past 7 months, I’ve (re)learned a few things about what it’s like to go through the creative process.
9 Lessons About the Creative Process
Learning is a discipline – There is always a learning component to what I’m trying to create. And with anything, you have to be willing to put in the effort to learn. Whether it is a class at school, a new cooking technique, or understanding a new concept, learning takes time and effort.
Critique is hard to receive, but worth it – I don’t know about you, but it is hard to receive critique, especially on something I feel good about. But I know I need it. Getting constructive feedback is helpful in putting light on areas that need improvement.
Having a mentor makes a difference – When you’re walking on a trail, you can only see so far ahead of you. Having a guide who has been there before and has experienced what lies ahead is a huge asset. A mentor is like a guide, someone who is there to support and help you develop skills and knowledge.
Take on challenges – Challenges help you grow, developing problem solving and pushing your limits. Try something new, experiment, and shake things up. The more you take on challenges, the more knowledge you gain and the more you grow.
Schedule time to not work – It can be easy to get wrapped up in a project or in solving a problem. But it is important to take time to step back and take a break. On one hand, it keeps you from burning out. On another, it allows you to come back with fresh eyes.
Ask questions – Sometimes, direction isn’t always clear. It is important to clarify and ask questions. When unsure about something starting out or down the road, asking questions saves time from having to backtrack.
Know your go-to people – We don’t live or work in bubbles. Know the people you can go to for support and feedback in the work you do.
Read often – When you read, you gain new insight and see things from a different perspective. When you apply the knowledge you gain to your work, you improve the outcome of the work.
Have patience – Creating is not always easy, because there will be times where you feel frustrated or stressed with what you are trying to do. Be patient with yourself as you go through the creative process.