Just like the rest of us, creatives like Milton Glaser, Louis C.K. and Ray Bradbury struggle when going through their process. No really, we have proof.
In a sequel of sorts
, we’ve assembled videos from musicians, stand-up comedians, writers, and others to help give us a look inside the inner-workings of some of the world’s most talented creatives.
1. Bill Evans: Find Joy in the Process(4:34)
Jazz Pianist Bill Evans strips away the glamor of creative work and emphasizes the need to have a love for the nitty-gritty. This clip is from the 1966 film The Universal Mind of Bill Evans.
The person that succeeds at anything…knows the problem is large and enjoys the step-by-step learning procedure.
2. Jack White: We All Need a Box (2:21)
The White Stripes frontman and former upholsterer talks about putting constraints on himself to spur his creativity. In the documentary Under Great White Northern Lights, White’s take on music is interwoven with concert footage of the band’s tour of Canada.
Force yourself. Deadlines make you creative.
3. Ray Bradbury: A Story Should Be Like a River (25:12)
In Story of a Writer Ray Bradbury delves into the author’s storytelling process, his clustered workspace and his struggle for gainful employment in his youth.
The real fear isn’t rejection, but that you won’t have enough time in your life to write all of the stories that are in you.
4. Elizabeth Gilbert: You Get One Passion (20:12)
Authenticity is important, but it’s also terribly inconvenient. Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert discusses with Paul Holdengraber how she creates a productive environment while staying true to her subject matter and her art.
I am my own bodyguard. I am the bodyguard of the biggest homework assignment of my life…and everything else has to be defended against.
5. Everything Is a Remix: The Elements of Creativity (11:20)
From the outside, a creative’s work can appear to be the result of a sudden stroke of genius. Everything is a Remix argues that creativity is often just the result of tinkering with the world around us to create something new.
By connecting ideas, creative leaps can be made producing some of history’s biggest breakthroughs.
6. Christoph Niemann: A Day in the Life (25:27)
Sometimes we need a few rules to help guide our process. The illustrator speaks at a Creative Mornings event to talk about his newfound respect for the 8-hour work day and how he needs one “creative” job for every three client jobs. Come for the advice, stay for the clever slides.
Talent is overrated. It’s all about enthusiasm.
7. Milton Glaser: Art Never Stops Giving (5:59)
Inter-spliced with a slideshow of some of his most famous works, a retrospective Glaser talks about the joys of teaching and creativity’s role in the world and in ourselves.
I feel fortunate that I’m still astonished, that the world still amazes me.
8. Baratunde Thurston: Stay Flexible (4:32)
Finding your professional identity can be overwhelming. Baratunde Thurston encourages us to identify with broad concepts and to not over-invest in a specific tool or platform. (via andrewspearnz
Cling less to a specific skill set and have more of a general mindset.
9. John Cleese: You Need Two Minds for Creativity (36:10)
In this video, one of the world’s greatest comedians gives a keynote speech about creativity with a handful of lightbulb jokes thrown in for good measure. What’s not to like? (via wantstobegreat
We too often get stuck in the closed mode. We maintain tunnel vision at times when we really need to step back and contemplate the wider view.
10. Chris Rock, Louis C.K., Jerry Seinfeld and Ricky Gervais: Know Your Audience (NSFW) (49:33)
We have no idea how he did it, but Ricky Gervais gathered three of the most influential comedians of the past 20 years to talk about their creative process for an hour. Among the highlights: Louis C.K. starts fresh with a new act every year, much to the horror of Jerry Seinfeld. (via rowdyman
Get rid of all your best weapons and then you have to get good.