Creative process: Explaining your art can be self-limiting


Media editor to journalist: “Don’t tell me about it, write it!

In any creative effort, it’s probably more productive for us to focus on our artistic work, rather than spending time talking about the work.

While it’s tempting to discuss what we are doing with others we may end up talking to the detriment of our imaginative mission.

The sculptor Henry Moore believes that talking about our creative efforts actually drains essential needed innovative energy from the creative act.

Moore writes:

“It is a mistake for a sculptor or a painter to speak or write very often about his job. It releases tension need for his work. By trying to express his aims with rounded-off logical exactness, he can easily become a theorist whose actual work is only a caged-in expression of conceptions evolved in terms of logic and words.” (1)

(1) Henry Moore, cited in the book The Creative Process, edited by Brewster Ghiselin.

— Dennis Mellersh

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