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Two's Company, Three's a Team

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Here's a theory about the creative process. It involves three different abilities. One person might have two or all three of them, or you might need several people for just one of the essential triad, but it goes like this:

1. Someone to have the idea.

2. Someone to turn the idea into a practical blueprint.

3. Someone who can follow the instructions and make it real.

If you just have ideas nothing happens. That's one of the reasons that you can't patent an idea. You get lots of people complaining that they thought of something first and now someone else is making money out of it. Tough. If you don't get parts two and three organised, your grand idea stays imaginary and someone else takes the credit.

If you can translate ideas into a plan, then you're on your way.

Then you've got to find someone with the practical skills to turn it into something that others can experience.

Artists do all three. Think of singer-songwriters or painters. Part one can be a creative team, or an individual, part two can be your reliable backroom support team: architects, pattern drawers; sketch artists. Part three could be a symphony orchestra or a building contractor or a team of embroiderers.

I realise that it's not the world's most earth-shattering creative endeavour, but I've been working on socks. I knew what they wanted to look like, knitted four pairs before I got them perfect and have now written down the pattern so that everyone else can knit them too, if they've got the part three knitting skills.

How does it work with you? Are you best at one part of the process? Are you looking for someone who can do the other bits? It's something to think about when you're making your ideas real.

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