Creativity in Captivity – Notes from Designers on Creative Life in Isolation | 02

Its Friday… but when every weekend is a weekday and every day is the weekend, what does that mean? In the second of the series we take hear from designers experimenting with a more recreational approach to creativity in captivity.

Surco Makino, Sneaker Designer, Louis Vuitton

I did some ceramic years ago in Hackney Farm but I didn’t build any technical skills, it was more like a get together activity with friends. At that time I didn’t realise what that first contact with argil did to me. Clay day has become a smooth intermittent venture during reclusion days at home. I began playing few months ago making shy trials of busts as new exploration method to continue creating my ‘Guerrilla boys’.

Last summer traveling across Japan with my younger brother I lost a notebook I carried with me for about some time. I used those pages to draw everything that crossed my mind, it was a vehicle to represent how I felt in certain moments when I struggled facing reality. It was not a self-portrait, it was the ‘guerrilla boys’ telling my story. Losing the notebook I believe it was part of the journey as well.

Today in the corner of my living room that has become a little workshop, I’m able to build full bodies. They are not sketches anymore and through still dynamism, they tell a story that one day we all will remember as those days we couldn’t go out and socialise as we used to do.

Mathieu Hagelaars, Founder, Studio Hagel

Be disciplined and don’t fall back in the same habits! During these days of quarantine I stick to my daily routine as much as possible. I wake up early, have breakfast, start working on my projects and exercise. Normally I like to walk around, see other people and work in my studio to keep my mind fresh, but during these days my surrounding is most of the time the same. So I try to find newness in other things. I listen to music a lot and keep on searching for new music. That energy I get when I find an obscure hidden gem, can keep me going all day. For my projects I keep on doing research on the internet, on instagram, youtube or even by watching a movie. Everybody has their routine of blogs or accounts to check, now is the time to find new sources of inspiration. Next to that I cook a lot. I’m trying out new recipes and ingredients to not fall back in the same pattern again.

Improve and learn new skills! As I’m working from home, I don’t have my machinery, tools and materials that are in my studio. So I draw a lot of ideas and when working on my projects I have to draw these instead of making ‘m. My drawing skills are improving.  The good thing about the quarantine limitations is that I have more time to invest time in new skills I always wanted to learn. I’m want to learn new skills for my making process like embroidery or so. These are things I can learn easily at home and apply these skills on my future projects when this whole thing is over. I also just order a dj-set because I always wanted to learn to do that. Let’s how that turns out 😉 

Kitty Shukman, Footwear Designer, YEEZY

I think my best advice is to respect how you feel day to day. You can’t push yourself to be creatively your best all the time. Especially with this added anxiety and isolation. Try to be kind to yourself if you are feeling less motivated. Find small ways like simple sketches, researching things you’re already really into as a starting point or my favorite thing to do when I’m stuck; picking up some clay and just playing with shapes to slowly ease myself into a creative mind set.

When you do feel in a creative space, let yourself be and enjoy it as much as possible. I think it’s a special ability we have as creatives to zone out of reality and let our minds take us somewhere else.

Feel free to share your thoughts on Creativity in Captivity on the Conceptkicks IG and stay tuned for more insights.

Matthew Taylor

Footwear designer | Founder + Creative director of Auxiliary

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