The “zone”. How do you get into it? What is it? Why is it so important to your art? Because it is the place you go to create, inhabit, take over to produce your work. It is a state of mind. It is a state of being. It is where you go to get ideas, your methodology, your solutions, your modus operandi, your experiments, and your explorations. It is YOUR playground! It is that other place inside of you that drives you and challenges you to produce, and won’t let go when you are tired, and pushes you farther when you think there is nothing left, and challenges you to be more, find more, and create more.
It is your workspace, it is your mental place, and your combination of heart and soul that shuts out the “real” world and lets you free float in your “other” world. It is directly connected to your work ethic, allowing ideas and technique to be born, grow, or die if necessary. Your best ideas will come out of the process, they come out of the work itself when you are in your zone. Sometimes you have to push your work through; other times, the work will pull you through. Don’t sit around waiting for inspiration. Get into your zone and get into your work. As Chuck Close says, “ Things occur to you. If you are trying to dream up a good art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else you reject will push you in another direction”.
As an artist you MUST learn how to get into your zone and trust it as the place from which you WILL create. In your zone, you will dig holes so deep that your own personal, creative solutions will be the only way out. In your zone, you will back yourself into corners where no one else’s answers will fit. In your zone, you will create. In your zone, you are free to be fearless.
“I think, invariably, people involved in creative work, if they are lucky, feel they hand themselves over to the
course of something else, to the creation of something they’re not entirely responsible for. We look back upon
it as if it’s an experience had almost by someone else.”
Daniel Day Lewis