The Principle – Stage 1: It’s What Happens Behind the Scenes

I am in the process of completing a piece and wanted to share a behind the scenes look at my process. The first draft was a flow chart of the quote. I thought it was okay, however did not think the design supported the words. The first round version was the second draft after many, many rough drafts on paper. I thought a circle supported the words better. The person who gave me the words told me that the organization has a triangle in the middle, so the third piece includes both a circle and a triangle. In total I have about fifteen rough draft pages. To date I have written this quote about thirty times just in the rough draft stages, watching for spelling and spaces issues all along the way.

Not all my pieces take this much effort. Some I create in one step, others two or three, and still others – like this one – take weeks. I find the work creative and cathartic as well as absorbing. I am always disappointed with a final piece as I know where all the flaws are and how what I finished may or may not be what I originally envisioned. I have learned over these decades to accept and move on. Time is a gift that allows us to both create and revise.

Seeing the final product is one thing, to truly understand how it came about it is the behind the scenes activity that makes it all happen. Choices, decisions, even changes of mind have a great impact. All that comes with hard work and time. Being patient with ideas and skills, finding the right tools or elements, even allowing mistakes to happen in order for things to grow organically. I have learned to document my decisions so I can apply them to future projects. In my next post I will show the phase 2 version where I begin to play with color…so stay tuned!

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