Creative Procrastination is good for you

Thursday, 13 August 2015

The pain of creativity is something I spend countless hours mustering courage to fathom.
A friend of mine seldom speaks of his work kindly both during and post creation, he goes through an internal struggle to piece each part together and then when it all fits his eyes cringe to watch it.
I asked him why he does it, why after the seemingly tumultuous process he then bends to make more time to fulfil another idea that will no doubt put him through the paces of that familiar stress.
He laughs without an answer and we nod on the phone giggling at how stupid we must seem.
His work is always beautiful, whether it be comedic or sentimental, it's always beautiful.
I don't know if his modesty blocks his perception or if he truly doesn't see it- but he still seems compelled to return to it week in week out.

I understand it with great compassion both because I observe a huge chunk of my friends go through the same cycle constantly and because I find myself peddling in it too.
I've always said I love writing but I curse it more often than I praise it, lying on the sofa mid afternoon forcing myself to let my fingers tickle the keyboard uninspired and unsure.
I feel angry at writing, unsettled by language, furious that I can't sing or paint or film - which is silly as I'm sure I'd only feel the same frustration if I could.

It's this kind of angst that sometimes makes me feel untalented but what it should be telling me is that I've not yet earned the right to unlock it all yet.
I'm pulling out saplings that haven't had time to understand their purpose and instruction.

As unstable and as unreliable as a method could be, I've stopped forcing myself to make, which means for now it's not my living. That' s okay. It doesn't feel oaky, it feels lazy, but it is more than perfectly okay.

We are often foolish in that we let our obsession with creation, following the force of sizzling anxiety and adrenaline to put the intangible into a product, take over the bare materials we need to do it well: living. Taking stock and thinking. Reading, watching, crying, eating.
Our brains don't just stop because we're not wrist deep in paint or late night loomed in stanzas.
They're preparing for the next project.
They're recuperating, tidying tiny pieces into their boxes to make enough room to lay out the new ones.

Stop watching the blue line on an empty document dance, put the lens cap back on, let something real bother you.
Let the rain piss you off and Loose Women irritate you, let a boy make you dizzy and your mother feel warm.
Read a book you should've studied or a film you never quite understood.
Hell, go out until three in the morning until life throws something at you that makes you feel something mad.

You'll create when it's right, push yourself when you feel, but don't forget it's okay not to live it all the time.
Stop sprinting for the exhibition, you'll run straight past it. 

A Trip To Paris With The Marriott

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

We arrive in Paris and it's hot. Unusually so.
So much so that everyone we meet errs on telling us that our sweaty upper lips are running with beads of luck. 
I like Paris, the architecture has a charm I think London might have once been on the cusp of attaining but just missed. 
I don't however usually feel all that safe.

My senses are knocked as we're thrown into the back of rickety looking  2CV's and get pushed into the middle of the chaotic chords of traffic with no more than a wary metal frame to separate us. 
The fear doesn't last long as it's almost impossible to allow it, our driver Romain is comfortably sweet with a brilliant british nod to sense of humour and we drive avoiding shade for an hour or so.He takes us past recognised landmarks and through a few I've never seen.

We stop at the top of Montmartre outside Sacré-Cœur and I get my first chance to try my secondary
school French with Emma Pelloux, a beautiful Parisian blogger who scoops me under her wing and recites stories of where she grew up across the view. 
The afternoon beats on and we take refuge at Renaissance Le Parc Trocadero and fill our plates with a buffet of incredible food, gazpacho in glass bubbles and serano ham wrapped in newspapers, the grounds of the hotel are like a tiny oasis that you'd never imagine to stumble upon in the middle of the bustle. 
Blissed out and contented but not for too long as we run straight over filled to the brim to the Grand Palais to gorge on a different sort of treat- Jean Paul Gaultier.
I felt so immersed, so relaxed, so ready to take on my own Paris adventure and pushed ahead from the group to reinvent myself as a chic arty local (far from the sticky, sweaty tourist I looked) and glided around the halls.
The evening in short was perhaps the happiest I'd felt all year.
We checked into the Renaissance L'arc De Triomphe, cooled down and headed to the roof terrace for champagne and dinner cooked by this insatiably hot chef who'd won the Euro version of Master Chef.
The champagne continued, a confident Charly Cox paraded, I waved goodbye to the english language and exercised whatever drunken french I could muster. 
We went on a magical after dark tour of the city that I flinched at people watching through a screen, my camera stayed firmly in my bag and I wandered through it all with a drink in hand knowing I'd possibly never get to see anything this special again. 

Ending up in Paris' version of Mahiki I was sceptical, but we celebrated on at new friendships and a successfully organised day and as the others started to flit back to their beautiful hotel rooms I stayed out with one lovely french man to be greeted with Kool and The Gang performing a set.
Kool and the god damn GANG!!!!!
I danced, I danced, I danced, until he reminded me I had a 7:30am Eurostar to catch and he walked me home.
We stopped in the middle of the street, the chaos from earlier asleep, to stand in the rain. 
He kissed me opposite L'Arc De Triomphe and I officially became whatever sophisticated Parisian woman I'd hoped I would before I arrived. 
It should merely be a dream, but for some strange reason, reality granted me a very special few days.
Thank you Marriott, for changing my perceptions of Paris and showing me the best side of travel.


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