Hey everyone! I'm Grant, an LA based writer/artist and long time friend of GSS. Welcome to the start of a new blog series for the website that will be published in addition to the Love Letter every week. Get Some Sleep is so important to me, and I'm excited to share the brand's past, present, and future evolution with all of you here. We'll be going through the daily minutia and interesting projects that happen every day in the operation of the brand.
The ‘creative process’ is sort of a loose catch all term that we prescribe to anyone who creates anything. Its a kind of rhetoric which insinuates the need for a methodology. The older I get the more sure I am that this is a complete myth. Certainly there is some validity for finding ways of working that suit your needs, but a catch all process is impossible. More importantly, suffocating your ideas into a rigid outline fails the true purpose of creating: connection. Let me explain!
I’m going to be sharing about myself a bit as well as a day from this week where we threw ourselves onto the pyre of the ‘creative process.’ To give some idea of my background: I’ve always been making things. Right now, I write frequently and spend a lot of time painting. Earlier this week I planned a day to paint and sew with Daniel. I have a gallery show coming up and needed to start my final piece for the collection. Daniel had his own project, a jacket.
If I was to describe my usual process, I’d start with blocking out a solid 5 hours where I know I’ll be uninterrupted. I hole up in my apartment like a troll and work away and until I simply can’t focus anymore. If I’m lucky, I’ll take a break and get back to it a few hours later. If not, that’s the day.
This is a great process for day to day life. Yet you can’t just expect something to work endlessly and produce the results you desire. What I’m detailing to you can easily become extreme monotony.
This is where the warehouse comes into the picture. It has its own special energy- 1 part chill and one part hard work. Its where community meets creation to me- which is special. The first time I visited about 4 years ago, Daniel and I printed a bunch of shirts which I can scarcely remember. Now, almost half a decade later, the warehouse is still a continued source of inspiration and creativity for me.
At this point its filled with sewing gear, easels, screen printing stuff, an embroidery machine, and tons of other stuff to enable making anything you’d like. Functionally, its unrivaled in its ability to serve as a creative space.
Its not just the space either, its the people. Drawing from across the country, the regular suspects filter in and out of the warehouse, each leaving their special mark (quite literally painting the walls), to channel magic into the space.
(A more recent picture of us with Nic/Young Chicken Pox cutting fabric!)
I hope this description isn’t too flowery, but offers an understanding into how I and many others feel about the space. Monday, I planned with Daniel as a warehouse work day.
Of course its not just arrive and create. There’s time for lunch, chatting, and whatever procrastination is required to get started. Daniel started outlining his pattern, we threw on a movie, and I got to underpainting my canvas.
(Underpainted the canvas with white to make the later colors pop!)
Its moments like that where you get to mutually create with someone that I find infinitely more valuable than 1000 lock in sessions at my apartment. It lets ideas flow, its a rare chance to have live spectators to your process, and most importantly its a chance to thrive in a community of peers.
Its excellent to have friends filter in and out, staying to catch up or watch part of a movie- sometimes people you’ve never met or hardly know. A true creative process is a collaborative one like this, where you get to live with your art for a while.
I’m not going to pretend that Monday got me out of some rut or inspired a revelation in my art. Certainly none of that happened- hell I didn’t even get that far and I don’t think Daniel did either before we got burnt out.
(Touching up highlights on my painting)
But now that painting is sitting there, ready for me to come back and bang out some more on later this week. That jacket is sitting there too, ready to be revisited. Warehouse projects have a sense of needing to be finished to make room for the next one.
(Daniel working on sewing the pockets to the jacket)
I think kids operate on a similar concept and I’m going to pretend its called parallel play since I don’t know the actual name. There’s some notion that children playing their own games along side each other can be just as valuable as playing together. This rings true to the creative process as well. There’s no point to making anything if you’re not achieving some sense of community with it. Collaboration in this sense isn’t mandatory all of the time, but a helpful way to reverse some monotony of infinitely grinding out projects by yourself. Its a refreshing approach to getting things done, another reason to keep up with working. Its so important to remain dedicated in a daily sense to what you’re doing. There’s no way forward without that.
The creative process therefore, is one which must be held at least sometimes collaboratively. It’s not so much about working on the same thing, but being able to work along side each other which inspires the magic in mutual work. Even if the end result isn’t extreme productivity, the act of community is an important one to remember as not just a passive feature of creativity.
I'll add an update to the projects and the final outcomes to the end of next week's blog posts for the interested readers. I'm also happy to answer any questions you leave on the comments on next week's post. Be sure to enter the November writing contest I announced in the love letter as well! Thanks everyone for reading :)