Creative Sabbatical

It’s imperative that in this life I merge my interests to live the fullest life I can live. Le Corbusier was an architect, urban planner, and furniture designer.

I’ve been influenced by Anne Lamott’s book Bird by Bird in which she says the great writers like Hemmingway all had discipline and routine. At the d. School, creativity is a muscle. Matt Kahn had a creative sabbatical every year. As a designer, I must figure out what I do and do not like and why it is so.

I will be instating a formal and routine creative practice as part of my life.

Sketching has been life changing – it has given me the ability to depict what I see and reflect on it similar to the power written words have given me. My creative practice is to routinely document what I see in the world that inspires me or that I find beautiful. This will be housed in a physical notebook I carry. I first take a photograph of said inspiration and follow it with a sketch to understand the form that inspired emotion.

A part of my skillset is the ability to synthesize and translate inspiration into new manifestations of idea. Whether that is in a form of a physical object, digital, or both. I’m 27 now, I only have so many more ‘projects’ left in me.

Working on myself in this way will create a rich inner abundance of creative confidence. A unique signature. I am not an ‘artist’ by the ordinary means. But I want whatever I create to have my signature. Similar to how Eames or Dieter Rams are known for their iconic designs, I want my name to be synonymous with a portfolio of designs, of meaningful work.

For the past 18 days, I’ve been sketching full time, 8 hours a day under my mentor in China. I call this time of my life, my creative sabbatical. By the time I return to America, I would have spent approximately 330 hours studying under my mentor. I am motivated to develop my visual imagination which includes thinking in perspective, industrial design sketching, and increased capacity to conjure up new forms and worlds.