Getting Lost In The Creative Process

By Danny McEnerney
RockFish Group Partner and Creative Operations Director

I’ve been getting into Pinterest lately, even though it probably isn’t a very manly thing to do! So much of this year (2016) has been about finding a creative outlet other than work, a function where I spend time getting lost in the creative process solely for the purpose and joy of creating. Pinterest has been a great inspiration gatherer for me, creating boards about conceptional art, design, and even boring stuff like cars I might actually be able to afford some day.

I remember a mentor of mine asking me:

“What is that one thing you do, where when you do it you completely lose track of time and get lost in the process?”

The next step after that question was to list:

  • How I am including that thing in my life?
  • How I’m excluding it?
  • What changes could I make to include it more?

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My answer and lists prompted huge changes in my life. The journey that followed took me from my 2 year stint as a college graphics instructor to being a freelance graphic & web designer.

I’m still searching for ways to include that time, and it only gets more challenging as our family and family businesses grow. Throw in a few rental properties, trying to be a good dad/husband/son/brother/friend and there you have it – creative time is reserved for if I can stay awake past 10:30pm, which rarely happens.

I’m committed to including it though, and I have my first idea for a completely self indulgent creative project.

I thought I’d share here some of the designs and artwork I’ve found on Pinterest that have nudged me in the direction of creative exploration, and prompted me to remember just how important the creative process is for me.

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Here are some things I’ve found inspirational lately:

“Non-sign” an installation piece by Lead Pencil Studio, located near the border between the U.S. and Canada

By Steffan Sagmeister

typo/graphic posters, black & white | typography / graphic design: Kambiz Shafei @ Designspiration |

By Steffan Sagmeister

UK Pavilion for Shanghai Expo 2010 / designed by Heatherwick Studio (photo by Set Murray)

Louise V Durham stained glass sculpture Shoreham by Sea

By Steffan Sagmeister. In art school I dreamed of doing design like this.

Chandelier installation by Werner Reiterer.

1550 Chairs Stacked Between Two City Buildings · by Doris Salcedo

#Artist Ron Mueck, Playing with scale of the human form. Elicits fear & wonder in me. Would love to experience them in person.

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