A while back, I wrote that being creative is hard work and incidentally, this article surfaced on my Facebook feed. Honestly, I don't really agree with much of the content, but I just want to share my thoughts on what creativity means to me.

Creativity stems from the word "Create" . In order to create, we have to think and come up with ideas - those take up time, energy and effort! Composers think long and hard to write music, writers and painters do the same with their art form, cancer researchers need to find how to target the bad cells without compromising the good ones, urban development requires serious planning and thought, technological advancements are on the rise with designs constantly being critiqued, and so many others! One thing is certain for me - there is creativity everywhere but is sadly, not used to describe the work in other areas than the Arts.

Being creative takes deep thought and lots of effort. Take Singapore roads for example, like Braddell Road or Lornie Road or anywhere else really. It is amazing how the roads can change from a straight road to one that meanders, overnight! I am certain the re-routing of existing roads has to be well planned out prior to any works happening on the ground. And the way it happens is utterly fascinating! We do not see it but the creative processes, albeit a different type of creativity, definitely require huge amounts of brain work.

Practicing is no different too! The small roads that lead to heavy traffic jams are like kinks to our playing, and we need to find ways and means to correct them so that our playing, like traffic on a 6-lane highway, can be smooth.

Having written some tunes and practice ideas over the years, I can certainly say it isn't easy and it takes quite some time and effort as well. Even something as simple as a group name proves difficult for me (I'm actually really bad with names). That being said, don't give up! Just like working on a technically difficult passage, you may feel that the wall is too high to climb and you've been struggling to come up with a solution. I suggest leaving it alone for a while and shifting your focus to something else before returning to the matter at hand. You may sometimes be surprised as to how you can better tackle the issue when you spend time away from it!

So go ahead, think differently and find ideas and alternatives! What works for some may not work for others, so be creative and make up exercises that suit you. But remember, it also takes effort to produce good and desirable results so keep pressing on!

Do share this or leave your thoughts/comments on your creative processes and how you tackle certain things in your practice room. As always, thanks for reading and I hope you guys stay safe and well!