In her recent book Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert writes that in order to approach creativity, we must "cooperate fully, humbly, and joyfully with inspiration." She suggests that any creative process is not a display of divine intervention nor the result of sheer force, stubborn will, or good luck (although sometimes it's a strange combination of all of those things.)
But most often, it's just a matter of showing up and doing your part.
She advises that any creative human (i.e. each one of us!) should be a partner to inspiration, rather than its slave or its master, and that we should "keep our eyes open. Listen. Follow your curiosity. Ask questions. Sniff around. Remain open."
This is a tall order for a perfectionist like myself. I want things to be perfect. On the first try.
And yet, an eraser has a permanent home on my desk. And a lot of times, what I make is just plain ugly and I have to start over. Or rework. Or revise. Or rethink.
In that spirit, here is a very abbreviated glimpse into the process of creating a logo. The request from the client left a crisp, clear, fully formed image in my head, but getting that vision onto paper took months. I wish I could say that I made hundreds of sketches, tenaciously and furiously refining my vision. In this case, however, it was more like sitting perfectly still next to a timid, wild creature until it trusted me enough to come into the light.