Day dreaming

One of my favorite things to do in grade school was to day dream. I enjoyed looking out the window, hearing the kids playing outside, while I made up movies in my head. I would usually get interrupted by the teacher before I could make it to the end of the plot.

As an eight year old girl, I was brainstorming screenplays, there was no budget to consider or any other limitations.

One of my favorite directors and filmmakers is Wes Anderson. I know he’s a popular director with a cult following, but for me he has always had this way of capturing how a child would see and understand the world. Each frame is full of color, interesting details, and camera movement to envy. I recently came across Wes Anderson’s book at the bookstore about how he developed and made his films. It’s full of beautiful behind the scene photos and interviews. It’s an expensive book so I keep going back to revisit and read it. His films have always had an effect on me that it’s possible to make a movie in my own style, he makes it look fun, creative and visually interesting. For the first time in years, I day dreamt a movie in my head. I am allowing myself to play movies directed by me in my head again. I thought of one today that I figured, why not write. As we get older the motivation to do anything is money, but when we were kids our motivation was fun.

Creating a story, drawing the thumbnails, day dreaming.. I don’t need a budget to do that, just pen and paper and a really good idea to play out.

My Top favorite books on Creativity

I want to introduce to you my top 3 books on creativity.  Reading about creativity will inspire you to use your talent on a daily basis, and teach you how to develop original ideas.  Here are my top 3 favorite books.
blog_imagine.jpgImagine by Jonah Lehrer talks about how creativity works. Every creative, even the creative geniuses, admit there is a process they go through to bringing their idea to life. “Once we learn how to creativity works we can make it work for us.”
He also has a chapter where he talks about outsider thinking. Sometimes when you’re younger, it’s easier to create because you don’t know enough to be an insider or an expert, due to ignorance there is a creative advantage. As we get more experience, we start to repeat ourself over and over again, “You must constantly try to forget what you already know.” Finding new challenges can help you approach things in a new way. This book was pulled from the shelves when parts of it were found to be fabricated, wish I knew what parts! 
blog_creativemark.jpgMaking your Creative Mark by Eric Maisel is second on the list. I found this book in San Francisco and read it throughout the trip . One thing I was struggling with at the time was how to be creative for myself and not just for someone who pays me.  After reading this book I was inspired to finally do YouTube, and leave a creative mark on the world.
This book acts like a manual for the creative journey, asking questions and giving practical steps. It was also comforting to hear stories from clients the author helped build their confidence when entering the market place. “You want to step out of the shadows and standing up for your work and your future”, “ your best life in the arts is dependent on your confidence level.”
blog_creativeincNext on the list is a book written by Pixar and Disney animation President Ed Catmull Creative inc. It was fun reading about how one of the most creative company’s function in creating animation films. He shares the genius of the company, the struggles of solving story problems and the hard process of making successful films. He gives you an inside look on what it’s like to work for a creative company, how they work hard to make life enjoyable for its employees. Steve Jobs was part of creating their office building, “everything about the place was assigned to encourage people to mingle and communicate to support our filmmaking..” One thing that stood out, Pixar was never afraid to admit what wasn’t working in their films and even in the office, they had open communication to call things out and to talk about it. We are invited to see how Pixar‘s creative culture with Pixar‘s braintrust- it’s a system for straight talk. They gather in a room and have them identify problems and encouraging them to be candid with one another. “As a creative we thrive when we work alone but an important skill to learn is how to work with other creative’s and other people in general how to make your idea come to life.” I read this at a time when I became leader of a department and it really help me create an environment for the team to create.

Preparation is Part of the Process

Sometimes it feels like the efforts we put into our personal work is useless and isn’t worth the time. If we were to calculate the hours we put into each project and see how much it’s costing us, it might cause us to give up. The only thing we know is that we love it and no one has to pay us to do it.

The pace of life can move so fast that we don’t have the time to prepare ourself. We hit record, or show up and rely on our past experience that we will know what to do next. But when is there time to study, read, and build? Be prepared for the opportunity to come is advice I’ve always taken to heart, but never really put it to action because I just didn’t have the time to. When do we have time to ask questions like, “What do you really want to do?” “What do you really want to make?””What impact on others do you want to have?”- let alone get them answered.

Now that I am at home with my daughter I am gifted with these open hours to do whatever I wish with my time while she sleeps. Because these moments can be 30 minutes to an hour, I have to use it wisely. For the first time in my creative life, I am able to work on work for myself. As I am taking the time to relearn a few things, research, read books that interest me, I am discovering new ideas and desires I never knew I had. When my daughter and I hang out at my local book store, I am noticing a pattern of what type of books I am picking up. Or when I work on youtube videos its allowing me for the first time to create for me. When I step back and see what all these things have in common. I can see clearly what it is I am passionate about. There is no job description for what it is I want to do, because it doesn’t exist.

I want to shout to the world all the things I am dreaming, but I know I have to invest time into my work before I can share anything. Every week I am showing up, putting in whatever hours I am able to. We hear these stories of how others are being successful, and I can’t help but wonder what the secret is. As I am pouring hours into my work, I am realizing it’s work. Preparing is part of the process, its what will make the difference between failure and success.

Yes I haven’t made any deposit into my back account, but I am pouring into my daughter, raising her, and when I get the chance pouring my creativity into myself. Building my dreams, hour by hour.

So I encourage you, whatever phase you are in, take sometime to prepare for what it is you really want to do. I’ve learned it doesn’t take hours like we use to do in school, but small breaks. Take the time to build something for yourself, your future self will thank you, and might even pay you.

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2014

For some reason the turn of the new year felt like another day, another year.

Maybe it’s because I’m thirty. Thirty years of witnessing the clock change. When asked about my New Year’s resolutions, I think of the uncompleted list from last year. Just when I think I’m almost there, a new challenge that requires courage comes to surface.

I want to be more discipline and focused this year. I want to throw my scared self off the cliff of adult hood and fly. I’m no longer running after happiness but truth.

Isaiah 40:31

but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

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1 Corinthians 9:26-27

Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

Psalms 1:2-3

but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers.

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Watching my nephew run free but yet still letting himself be held reminds me to let God hold me in His peace as I continue to run my race.

May His truth be our guide this year.

Between Now and Then

A few years ago my dad shared a youtube video with me. It was of a motivation speaker named Les Brown. I laughed at how old fashion the graphics and studio audience looked but once I started listening he caught my attention. He spoke about inner conversation about our dreams, that our worst enemy can be ourselves.

“If you wanna keep on getting what’cha getting, keep on doing what’cha doing.”

“You are the director of your life.”

“The future is unfolding for you right now, its unlimited.”

“No one knows where you can go..you don’t even know that.”

“If you aren’t willing to risk, you can not grow, and if you can not grow, you can not become your best, and if you can not become your best, you can not be happy, and if you can not be happy, then what else is there.”

I was so impacted and encouraged I saved the video to my itunes.

This week it came up on my shuffle. I let it play and to my surprise a lot of what he was saying I had overcome. I realized the growth of my inner conversation. I no longer talked my self out of my dreams but now I was encouraging myself. Positive growth doesn’t happen over night, it took a journey. Don’t let your life pass you by, be encouraged, all things are possible, dreams take hard work. So endure till the end. 🙂