A Creative’s Burning Urge to Build
- Oct 2nd, 2015
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When you’re a creative and productive person, there’s a sense of excitement and anticipation we experience at the start of every project as ideas to solve particular problems start shooting around and formulating in our heads. This post is about something more than that, it’s about that overwhelming surge of adrenaline and desire to create when the project you’re about to start work on, is yours.
This is a feeling that should be embraced, never dwell or hesitate to act on it, go grab your notepad and start noting ideas, draw some sketches, just do something that will help your creative side take over and your idea take shape. You never know when these ideas will strike so it’s important to do what you can there and then to keep track of your thoughts, especially if it’s a side project you’re only able to do small parts on at a time.
There’s nothing worse than knowing you had a good idea for a feature that improve your product but left the idea too long and the minor details that had you extremely excited at the time have since blurred have become are harder to focus on.
Most of the ideas I have tend to come to me when I’m switched off, away from the computer, relaxing and sometimes even sleeping. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had an idea in the middle of the night only to reach in the general direction of my phone to fire a few notes into for the morning to process over a coffee. This happens for both side projects and things I’ve been working on at my day job, you can’t help when these things strike!
Depending on your idea there could be more obstacles than an army assault course. Fuck them. We’d have gotten nowhere as an industry if we gave up at the first hint of trouble. You know where you want to go and you know how you have to do it, if your idea is something definitely worth pursuing then put the hours in because in the end, you will be so absolutely delighted with yourself and the teething issues will be no more than a distant memory.
Don’t worry about any limitations you may have, go and set new ones. Like rules, they’re there to be broken.
If you’ve had an idea that has stopped you in your tracks just as quickly as you’ve thought to yourself ‘that wouldn’t work’ have you at least had a look into whether there are any similar products/projects currently out there? If the project or idea as a whole already exists or wouldn’t work for whatever reason, perhaps there is some element of your idea that could work elsewhere, it may even be worth looking into getting patented.
Never disregard your ideas as nonsense because no-one else has thought of it or made something similar into a real thing. Your ideas are as unique as you and it may be your distinct outlook on the world that forms the ideas no-one else has thought of. Here comes that Steve Jobs quote.
“Here’s to the crazy ones…”
I know from experience that you will face issues going from the initial idea to a live project, something completely different from the previous issues I’ve mentioned regarding limitations or know how, and that’s pressure.
With regards to this website in particular, I put myself under a lot of pressure to meet deadlines I’d made up in my own head. I was putting myself under pressure as I needed a design by X date, I needed the site built by Y date, whilst thinking to myself “what would the community think of me if I didn’t manage to launch the site when I said I would?” and because of that I probably, admittedly, launched something that wasn’t quite ready or fully thought out.
I got caught up in worrying about what others would think that it clouded my judgement with regards to decisions to be made about a project that they either knew very little or absolutely nothing about.
On the other hand, I had my plan, I had that burning desire to spend as much of my spare time as possible working on Everyday Designer and just ran with it. The initial launch, and consequently the redesigns that followed maybe never quite lived up to my vision for what I initially wanted to do with the project but these are lessons learned for the next time I have that sense of overwhelming desire to make an idea into something real.
“Build it and they will come…”
By embracing that feeling I consider myself very lucky to have made the acquaintances that I’ve made through this site. I have learned so much from their writings and I am beyond grateful to those that spent their time producing the excellent content you’ll find here on Everyday Designer.
This project will continue to evolve and others may run along side or indeed take priority over it but it will continue purely for personal development if nothing else. Working on a project of this scale allows me to test and reflect on workflows or ideas that may need further thought; everything from how I develop the website to the information architecture and it’s impact on search engine optimisation is taken under consideration all the time, I try to iterate and improve as much as possible so that as this website evolves, as does my skill set, workflow and thought processes.
These all stem from my burning desire to try and create something that people will like and gain value from. I would genuinely love to hear about anything you guys are working on or have the urge to create so please leave a comment below or tweet me, maybe we could even work on something together one day!