Image: Nick Knight
August 22 2011
My last entry, and I am in contemplative mood as I think about the new work I am making and the old work I’ve left behind.
For me, the creative part of any project is sacrosanct – the time when only a few people can participate in and influence the spirit of the process, the purest time. When the “final” artwork or prototype goes to the wider audience, things change; everyone can then impart their opinion. I think that left to the artist, much of the work would stay in the studio, knowing that what you intended stayed true, no one changed it, copied it, tampered with it or even ruined the experience you went through to create it. To create is a positive action, and needs to be at the very least respected; you move forward, and it is this act that I feel balances the mind. There is no worse experience for me than to see what I have created change beyond all recognition when it is handed over. It is difficult to understand change, when something was so successful exactly as it was. For me ego always plays a part in bad design, and just because you can do something, it doesn’t always mean that you should.
Another part of the process which you must deal with is, of course, plagiarism. Many people say that this should be taken as a compliment, but when it is continuous or blatant, of course you cannot. Believe it or not, creative people would rather see new, and further development of their original ideas by others than imitation – for again, this would be a forward movement rather than a negative one. Of course the currency of the artist is his or her ideas, and because of the nature of your work you can always have other ones...
There is no ego involved in good work; regardless of who makes it, it should all be part of a greater picture and seen within the context of that time. Often when you reflect back you cannot remember all of the feelings that you experienced during those creative times; it is usually only one overriding emotion that stays with you. This is why the spirit in which the work is made is as important as the final work. The creative process for me is about making that one emotion a positive one, for the maker but also for the viewer.