habit zero #101

Welcome back to the second volume of Habit Zero. I know, “the second volume” sounds a bit pretentious, but I love the sound of it. It creates a sense of a new beginning and, at the same time, acknowledge the fact we have already spent 100 days together with creative challenges, insights, and reflections. If you are reading this, you are already part of this journey or a newcomer. So, welcome! Or welcome back!

If you are looking for a short recap (or introduction) of what we are aiming to do in this daily blog, have a look at our introduction post.

If you followed Habit Zero during the first 100 entries, you already know that I take it one day at a time. Each day starts with a new creative challenge, which is followed by trying to capture or create Creative Insights throughout the day. Most of the challenges will not take long, and I do them in my dead-time or as an opportunity to take a break and spice up my day. At the end of each day, I take a few minutes to reflect on the challenge and the Insights — an activity which often results with insights about the creative process, the creative mindset, what works best (at least for me), and how it can be applied further to real-world challenges.

I have to admit that when I started this journal, I was skeptical regarding my ability to say something meaningful about creativity daily. Practicing creativity daily is one thing — writing about it is entirely different. It was nothing less than experience as I’m sure the next 100 days will be. And yet… I want to challenge myself even more.

So, in the upcoming weeks (and months) I will try to expand my creative insights — the outcome of the challenges — to domains I feel less comfortable with. One such area is drawing.

As you will soon see, drawing is not my forte. OK, that was a lie. I can’t draw. At all. That was the reason I was drawn to photography: I felt that was the only way I could express my thoughts visually. And that is precisely why in the next 100 days, I will force myself to draw at least some Insights. Expect nothing more than lame doodles. But as you remember, we are not judging the result of our creative challenges — and especially not their artistic quality. Instead, we are focused on experiencing creativity, on seeing things differently, and on doing things we are not used to doing. And that’s why drawing is a perfect choice for me: it will force me to do something I don’t get a chance of doing.

As you understand, apart from this vague idea of trying something beyond my comfort zone, I don’t plan anything in advance. So, we’ll just have to see how it goes. I might end up creating sculptures, or falling in love with my useless drawing… or something else I can’t even imagine now.

With that in mind, I would like to open this volume with artwork by Maarten Baas as captured in the Design Museum in Holon.

This piano is part of Baas’ Smoke series. To create (or should I say: recreate) it, Maarten Baas used existing items such as this piano and simply burned them, making sure they are still usable after the process. Baas almost destroyed the objects just to bring them back to life with a different look, a different texture, and sometimes a different shape. The result is stunning, especially when you explore an entire space occupied by these familiar yet mysterious objects.

Taking something and imagining what it could be by a simple (yet radical) process as burning is nothing less than amazing. It is the purest form of creativity. It is inspiring.

See you tomorrow with the first creative challenge in Vol. 2 🙂

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