There are lots of theories as to why we humans are driven to create.
I won’t pretend to have it all figured out, but I do see some desires at play that push people to bring something into being.
For example, people create out of a desire to feel significant. When we make something, it helps us feel like we matter.
We create out of a need to prove our skill, or connect with each other. Lots of creative projects make great conversation starters.
We sometimes create as a power play, or—on the other end of things—as an act of playfulness. We create to try to influence or impact someone.
Sometimes we create just because we feel like it.
But my favorite act of creation is a fight.
I don’t think I’m alone in this, but I don’t hear a lot of people talking this way about the creative process. Maybe you relate.
I’ll try to explain what I mean.
It’s not that I’m protecting myself from something in a battle against an evil force of darkness. It’s more offensive than defensive: see, I’m initiating a fight where there’s something to win.
The strange part is, I’m not even sure how to quantify what I’m after. It doesn’t have a name, so I’ve given it a sort of nickname, I guess.
It’s not the best nickname, but I haven’t thought of anything better yet. I just call it “something bigger.”
The most meaningful acts of creation (to me) are initiated as a fight for something bigger.
It’s that trace of the unknown just out of reach. The hint of an echoing parallel universe. Something strange, something more … something bigger.
There’s more going on, but I can’t reach it without a fight.
About the photo
Title: Something Bigger
Location: A puddle in a sheep field outside of Carnforth, Lancashire
Camera: Canon EOS Rebel XTi
Focal length: 55 mm
Speed: 1/200 seconds
Date taken: January 9, 2008