Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Creativity is hard...

Anyone who tells you that the creative process is fast, easy, or simple is telling you a lie (Or they haven't created much).  The truth is that creativity, especially collaborative creativity, is a process that takes a great deal of time, false starts, discussion, frustration, and discipline.  For every #1 song or brilliant movie, there are a hundred more that were dumped along the creative journey.  Creative people often make the process seem easy to the audience, because the audience only sees the end result: a polished, well thought out, well executed presentation.  But the ease with which it is presented to the audience belies the hours and hours of preparation, rehearsal, and deliberation that transformed a glimmer of an idea into the final product.

A great example of this is the process that goes into creating the stage designs we use at Topeka Bible Church.  When we decide to create a new design, I arrive at our stage building sessions with a rough idea and all the materials I think we'll need.  However, never once has my initial idea been the design that ended up on the stage.  For one thing, whenever an idea is honed by a group of creatives, it evolves for the better.  For another, you never know how an idea on paper will work in the real world.  We often find ourselves ending up with designs that we never would have thought of without going through the hours and hours of experimentation and deliberation.  We often completely abandon our original plan and go in a completely different direction, even after spending a great deal of time developing the first idea!  Being willing to scrap a bad idea is as important as developing a great idea.  The fact is, not all of your ideas will be good.  If you can't edit yourself, you'll have a slew of mediocre ideas, at the expense of your great ideas.  Get your ideas out into a community of creatives.  They'll help you weed out the bad ones and develop the great ones, just like our team of creative volunteers at TBC collaborate to create wonderful worship environments.

Check out some of TBC's past stage designs on ChurchStageDesignIdeas.com

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