make art. transform life.

thoughts about creativity and  art:   live your life as your work of art.

How to think outside the box by putting things into the box.

shadows & box   by  bvw To" think outside the box" means to think outside of the expected.

Nice idea. Very creative.

But how do you get yourself to relax enough to do that? Twyla Tharp has come up with a very concrete way of collecting ideas. I have mentioned her and her book, "The Creative Habit" before. It is well worth taking a look at.

Interestingly enough, Twyla Tharp's method involves a box. A box for each tiny little idea you have. Then as you come across photos, writing, music, objects you put them in the box. After a while, as it gets full, you look through it. Suddenly, there are so many ways to investigate and expand that tiny little idea you had in the beginning.

  • Choose some idea you want to explore.
  • Be on the alert for anything that seems to be connected in any way.
  • Eventually, the contents of the box will provide fertile ground for developing ideas.
  • The labelled box gives the idea the respect it deserves.
  • It makes a place for an abstract idea.
  • Nothing has a schedule or has to be put in order.
  • You may start several boxes at once, without a problem.
  • It is there waiting for you when you need it.
  • The physical box reminds you that you are looking for ideas.

I have used a box for doing idea research. I tend to use different  color notebooks. I also use the computer for additional information and links to add to either the real box or the notebook. I refer to my art journals as my own personal visual encyclopedia. And I do write a lot in my art journals and make lots of literary connections.So books are very much a part of my collection of ideas.

Have you come up with another  system for collecting ideas? What works for you?