I am on the plane with my homework. I’ve just got the basics…pens, paper and 3 reference photos. I want to understand how an eagle’s feathers form, how and where they lay to make a wing, how they move in flight. And so I begin…head down, minding my own business…working it out.
During my hours of process, something extraordinary happens – I gain an audience. Truly, I am caught off guard as flight attendants cruise by to see my progress, as the lady two rows back leans in to ask me questions, as a shy little boy stands beside me instead of going to the toilet (which he so obviously needs to do). I even had one man voice his disappointment when I took a movie break. What was going on? I asked a fellow artist and his observation rang true:
The act of creating something is fresh, new and in the moment – very different from any form of entertainment or distraction found on a plane journey. Without realizing it, I literally drew them in.
You might keep your creative process private. I understand that. But maybe you have something to give by simply bringing your workings out into light. Go ahead, try a new venue and see who you can engage and encourage today.