Diving more into the ethos of the creative process and what brings out the best creative design through stimulation and environments

There are so many times I have been put on the spot from customers with left field questions only to begin brainstorming ideas which leads to great progress. For example, this article I’m writing resulted me staring at a blank screen wondering what to type only to result in a side conversation with a close friend and counterpart that stimulated the idea to write about this topic.

Sometimes coming up with an idea can result in staring blankly onto a screen of white and working out what that first stroke will be, or that spark of initiative to turn into a process that you struggle to keep up with. So, when a client places a curve ball question, you have to make a stroke and run with it. This may not be the greatest idea to begin with but through consistent creative processes and experience, you can turn what would be like a Mr. Squiggle with the client aka. ‘Blackboard’ demanding you “hurry up!” but all within a split second in amongst conversation.

It’s not all planned. Not creativity on a ground level. Coming up with an idea or a design isn’t something I could generally say “Ok, let’s use this creative model to come up with something new.” There is only one way to get the creative process going and that is creating an environment that stimulates the creative process, but also allow for pressure situations to initiate it also. The environment can be a space, a place or even a mindset, however the stimuli required must be pressure and spontaneity.

Some of the greatest work I have ever done, and some of the greatest brands ever made like the Nike Swoosh took only 17.5 hours and cost $150 in 1983 (now valued at $360)  were done quickly and efficiently by capturing a good creative process under pressure stimuli and within a good environment. Unfortunately, not all designs come under these situations as client specs and other external influences can effect this. However, there is a balance generally amongst it all that gives a stunning final result considering the brief does not change often.

Digressing from my earlier statement, the environment that you are in allows for creativity and then the stimuli allows for the initiative. If a stimulus is spontaneity and being put off guard then being pushed out of your creative environment and comfort zone promotes the initiation and then returns to the environment to continue to be creative.

So, how does this effect the client?

To be honest it doesn’t affect the client at all. This is an internal process that is uncontrollable and unavoidable. Although, it is considerable that as a client to ask the right questions and provide good information to the creator which then allows for this process to flourish. As before I mentioned some of the best brainstorming has come from this spontaneous process, a curve-ball question, but these were excellent questions asked at the right time.

The design process is a feedback loop between client and designer. There is much contributed to the direction and content communicated to the creator as then to be processed and delivered back to the client. But then it is up to the experience and talent for the designer to reciprocate and create a great relationship with the client as to take this information and produce artistic and utilitarian design and marketing direction with only a slight level of pedantic boundaries for an ‘outside the square’ solution.

Pressure stimulates and the environment facilitates. The creative process is one shared through client feedback and communication and creative talent and design experience. Although the chicken and the egg scenario states which comes first, and then as a designer, you must then facilitate your client in the right environment to allow for the right questions to help you. As the client comes to you for a solution, and you cannot let ego get in the way of that.