Practicing Creativity

Sketch the whole first

Since Creativity is organic, and Morphogenetic creativity starts with wholeness, a key skill is to sketch the whole first. Start from a perspective that encompasses the entire boundaries of the space in which the whole might emerge. This may look different depending on what is being made. In the case of a drawing or painting, this might mean literally a rough sketch outlining the major shapes of the image, or a small thumbnail sketch that reduces the level of detail to be able to get a sense of the whole as a unified composition. In the case of a building design or construction, it might mean walking around the land, and roughly marking boundaries and locations, along with a pattern language describing what might emerge as a coherent system. When writing, the whole might be sketched out in an outline of topics, or in a single paragraph that summarizes in a sketched high level form the central concept and topics of an entire book.

Sketching the whole is a way to Set boundaries and to make sure you can Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.

Sketching is being accurate within a range of uncertainty. This is a rough shaping, and the tools you use should allow rough and adjustable placement (Match each action to the scale of the tool) followed by repeated, incremental refinement (Develop the whole together, Reduce batch size and increase frequency).

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Reduce batch size and increase frequency
Reduce project size and each step size

Practice awareness of the whole
For life to occur, everything is governed by the wholeness from which it came

Practice morphogenetic creative processes
A morphogenetic process follows a system of simple rules (like a genetic code), and evolves through patient application of those rules

Creativity is organic
Creative processes that result in The Quality Without a Name maintain a state of coherence and wholeness as the project's shape evolves, gradually growing as though from a seed, rather than building from a pre-conceived master plan or assembling from pre-fabricated parts

These are my draft notes on creativity—as a skill, a practice, and a mystery

About Practicing Creativity

These are my notes on creativity—as a skill, a practice, and a mystery. Everything you find here is in a perpetual draft state and much of it may not make sense. I hope these notes become clearer over time as I continue writing and updating them, although I hope they might be useful even in disarray.

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