Everything seems to be in place. You have your mind set on the task at hand, and you are confident that you have the skills and the talent to see it through. Regardless of the medium, you are working in, it is, however, important to remember that not only must you be certain that you have the ability to succeed, but that your preparation in all other areas is as good as it can be. This means thinking in some detail about all those other aspects of a project that ensure its success, not simply about whether you nous and skills are sufficient to reach your goals. The following are a few aspects that you might consider when deciding that you have fully maximized all your resources to ensure the best possible results.
Research the Subject
You may think that you know all that you need to know about the creative work you’ve embarked on. You have possibly done it a number of times before and produced what you have been satisfied with, and drawn plenty of admiring comments. Maybe it’s an art project, and you’re planning on producing the kind of portrait you reckon you can do in your sleep. This doesn’t mean that you know all there is to know as you may still be able to find out more about the subject and about the best techniques that you can employ. Remember, too, that in any field of artistic endeavor, things can change. The way things used to be done is not always the best and the most efficient. To start again at the beginning also doesn’t mean that all your experience is worth nothing. Don’t ever be afraid to seek advice if you are unsure where to go when things are not going as you planned.
Practice Make Perfect
Giving up is the easiest thing to do in the world. We’ve all done it, and we’ve probably done it plenty of times. However, you will never produce your best unless you’re prepared to work at it. Let’s imagine that you’re involved in a theater company, and you want to come up with the kind of performance that will get everyone talking. Maybe you’re playing a young dancer who gets her chance to shine on the stage in a show-stopping number. You think your dancing skills are up to the mark, and perhaps they are. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be prepared to put in the hours to really make an impact. Take a leaf out of Channing Tatum’s book. Despite the dancing talent he showed in Step Up and Magic Mike, he had nothing like the tap-dancing skills required for the routine he had to do in the Coen Brothers’ Hail, Caesar! Therefore spent some three months sweating like crazy to prepare for what was only a six-minute scene. Joaquin Phoenix learned guitar and Reese Witherspoon the autoharp to deliver authentic performances as Johnny Cash and June Carter in Walk the Line. These are examples of not just dedication. They also show that working at something can be not only its own reward but go towards a great finished product. Think about that the next time you see an actor pretending to play the piano who obviously can’t. It’s nothing but a distraction.
Keep a Track of Your Health
Of all the things you should consider when decided how to approach a project, this is perhaps the most important. You cannot take physical or mental wellbeing for granted. Don’t be tempted to live on takeout food just because you feel that you should be concentrating all your attention on a show. Added to this, if you’re acting a part that means you need to slim down a little, you might consider some diet options. If you are acting in a local drama production that requires you to shed a few pounds, you might take some inspiration for what some stars have done to get themselves in shape. Asked to get her weight down to the lowest she could for Cold Mountain, Nicole Kidman followed a diet based on eggs. Nicole went to extremes, but following the Egg Diet with care is a very effective way of shedding pounds. Looking after yourself will not only prepare you for your role but produce a better and healthier you.
Nothing ever goes right all the time every time. It’s important that you also bear in mind that doing nothing is not necessarily such a bad idea, even when your project appears to be going nowhere. This is particularly true in writing. You may be experiencing a period of profound writer’s block. This shouldn’t cause you to worry too much. Agatha Christie, probably the bestselling author of all time, advised aspiring writers never to panic if the inspiration simply wasn’t flowing. Dame Agatha understood that some of our very best ideas occur to us when we imagine that we are not thinking about them. This is because if you are already mentally involved in what you’re working on, it’s likely that some part of the subconscious is always mulling the whole thing over, even when you’re doing something else. Agatha maintained that some of her best ideas came to her when she was washing the dishes. Don’t fret. Relax. Walk the dog. Mow the lawn. If inspiration has come to you before, it will, if you don’t get too worked up, come to you again.
For every artist who suffers for his or her art, there are plenty who otherwise live normal, stress-free lives. It depends on a lot of factors, but there is no reason why the creative process can’t when handled with thought and care, be just like any other activity. Pace yourself, don’t panic, and inspiration will come. Ensure you do not overwork yourself as well as this will lead to negative results. Even if you work on your project little and often, ensuring you work when you are driven creatively is essential.