Creative sparks essay, week 2: Relationship to work & productivity

I needed a place to put my Creative Sparks week two essay that wasn’t a chat box. This was not emailed out to subscribers.

The one thing I’m guaranteed to ace is procrastination. Ironic because this week is all about my relationship with work. I used to say I’m good under pressure, but that’s false. Even I know that stuff created under high pressure isn’t usually better quality than one that had a chance to be edited. On the other hand, which of the people who engage with your work can recognize what is rushed vs cared for?

Sometimes the first shot is the best, but you must take 50 more to realize it. My argument here is that you satisfy your anxiety of worrying if you missed out on something with those 50 shots. Only then are you certain that the first shot is the best shot. Alternatively, no matter how you think about it or set it up, the shot is terrible. It never lines up with what’s in your head. Do you give up or push on, potentially submitting yourself to the sunk-cost fallacy?

It can be more difficult to justify your creative endeavors as acceptable work when you grow up in an environment that sees them as hobbies at best, a waste of time at worst. It’s funny how the first large handful of years of your life can affect the entire rest of it. When creative production is part of your paid work, I find it tricky to disconnect the two. Taking my camera out and setting up this shot on a Saturday—a day when I set a boundary not to work—felt a little like work. Sitting at this computer at my desk on a Sunday—a separate place I designate for work only—certainly feels like work.

Which all makes me wonder if work is a feeling or is it a set of actions that create that feeling?

Photo notes: I’m not entirely satisfied with the final set because it didn’t quite turn out like I thought it would in my head. Representatives of the push & pull nature of work vs pleasure are in here: Zoey’s shark bite in my fingerless work gloves, plants spilling out of the Origami filter on top of an Onyx coffee box, a pen in the middle of it all.