To be honest, this whole Month of Marks thing has been harder than I thought. At the start, I thought I would relish the challenge of being creative everyday and getting round to doing all the baking and writing that I have been thinking about for ages. Whilst this is to some extent true, the passion-lag has set in quicker than I thought. Over the past few days it has become increasingly difficult to persuade myself to bother to take the time that I said that I would set aside, and even when I do decide to take the time, I’ve struggled to really delve into the process – to want to take photos, to want to be creative about what I’m baking rather than just sticking to a recipe I know. It’s also becoming increasingly harder to want to share pictures and recipes and thoughts on the blog.
I don’t know if that is partly a concern about quality – the things that I have been doing every day don’t necessarily get the same kind of attention that they do when I’m working on them less frequently. Particularly when it comes to writing – I feel like I’m not getting the good stuff down, but just the stuff that happens when I bother turning up at the page. But I guess, as the Month of Marks blog points out – creativity isn’t just about those once in a while flashes of inspiration, but about the daily and regular hard work of just getting on with things.
I guess another part of it for me is that I enjoy so completely losing myself in the process of baking that it sometimes becomes something of a pain to try and take pictures to document it, to think too much about what I’m doing and why, and then to write a review of it at the end.
So this morning I limited the number of photos I would take and just got on with baking..but I got slightly distracted by how cool the inside of a passion fruit is.
Part of the reason that I did end up just wanting to bake and lose myself in the process was that I have this project coming up for work that I can’t quite get my head around and really needed some quiet time to think about how to approach the issue. Baking always does this for me – the repetitive processes that demand just enough attention to also let your subconscious meander through the creative areas of your brain, seeking out the ideas that are just below the surface. I think it helped me today to re-figure what I bring to the project, what my passions about it are, and how I can communicate those with others.
It also made me realise that part of the reason that I consider baking to be a creative process or time for me is that it allows me to bring my whole self into that time, all of my problems and concerns and issues get dealt with in that space. Sometimes a particular piece of baking is the end result of that creativity, but more often than not it is a stepping-stone, it is creative momentum for other areas of my life that I find it much harder to be creative in.
So when we sat down for the planning meeting this afternoon, and a whole evening of painting, I felt that baking in the morning had enabled me not just to bring passion fruit cupcakes to the meeting, but also more creative ways of thinking about the project. I felt I finally had something of myself to share. And maybe this will feed back into the baking…anyway, the quest to re-find the passion goes on.