“I’m as proud of what we don’t do as I am of what we do.” - Steve Jobs
We live in a constant battle with gravity. Nothing is more consistent than that ever-present downward pull.
As creatives, we fight another battle, the battle of complexity. No matter how simple something starts, we can always make it more complex. Just as gravity is a force of nature, there is a human nature in all of us, pushing us to create, build and add. This human nature is as strong and constant as gravity, and it has led us to create and build more things than we ever could have dreamed. While this force of nature has given us some amazing things from technology to art, it can easily overpower us and lead to clutter and chaos.
As creative people, we must learn to tame our desire to create.
All of us want to leave our mark on the world by creating and building wonderful things, but often that same desire spills over to stain our own work. It’s not uncommon to ruin or tarnish a creation with our desire to add more.
It is easy to add. It is difficult to cut away at a work until it’s perfect. Often, the simplest of creations are the ones that stand the test of time and stand out as being the most beautiful.
As we go about creating and building the world around us, I hope we can all get past our innate pride to create for our own satisfaction and glory. Then, we can move toward creating with the desire to simplify and better our own chaotic mess. Rather than asking ourselves what else we can create, let’s ask what we can take away to make a creation simply perfect.
I don’t think the first people who considered flying to outer space began by asking, “Is this reasonable?”