Brick by Brick

Allowing your creativity to flow in short bursts rather than long winding blocks of time can be productive as well. I battle with the notion of needing a good solid amount of time before I start making something.. But based on how life works, I’m beginning to learn that part of the challenge is learning how you can weave in and out of creating. How can you do this if the creative flow requires focused attention for a period of time? What is the minimum viable amount of time? These are just some questions that come to mind as I think about the problem.

I realize that it’s the small steps that make a big difference. Make a little snippet once a day rather than making one big project once every 4 months. Your energy will be depleted by the end of the day and the exhaustion will just make you feel burnt out.

Building something brick by brick will allow you to keep moving forward no matter how slow. Long term projects requiring multiple outputs is more feasible by breaking down the required tasks into digestible chunks. It’s something so simple yet hard to do. Also, I’m not claiming to be an expert regarding this; I am simply becoming more conscious of it’s effectiveness as a principle in being productive.

Groovebox as a bricklaying tool

The groovebox classification of sequencers / synthesizers is I find, the most efficient tool I have at the moment. It allows me to make a pattern which represents an idea encapsulated in a maximum of 4 bars or 64 steps. Within these 64 steps I have the option to use 1 – 16 different sounds and create both simple and complex patterns in the process. Here is an example of such a piece created with a groove box (Korg Electribe 2)

Recording music this way has allowed me to create in a fast, and engaging way. After making music with a traditional DAW for some time now, I find it very inspiring.

I used to think that the machine was very limiting because I could not go back and tweak the sounds, or change the levels once I had recorded its output. However, this limitation is what is liberating. I have to trust my ears and decide on the spot on the sounds that I use, as well as the volume of each element. By making those decisions swiftly I am able to focus on the MUSIC and I’m able to record it right away.

This workflow/approach is only the tip of the iceberg as it can open up so many possibilities for projects I’d like to do and have been planning to do. Given the busy schedule that life gives us, the ability to make something fast in a very spontaneous way is inspiring.

One of my dreams is to be able to keep creating music and art no matter what my circumstances may be. This is definitely a step forward.

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