Creativity in the time of coronavirus

Written by Rhiannon Richardson

4 May 2020


When a ‘creative idea’ is required, there are usually a few steps I go through in order to come up with the initial nugget. 

I read, I think, and I talk to colleagues. Be that over the desk, in the kitchen waiting for the kettle to boil, or in a creative forum designed specifically to help us come up with creative campaigns for clients.  

And, importantly, I sleep on it. I mull it over. And I think about it in moments when I’m alone until the idea develops into something which I can put on paper. Even in a usual, busy week, those times when I am alone with an opportunity to think and daydream are many – I drive to work alone every day, I walk the dogs alone every day and in these moments of calm; I think. 

And this is what I’m currently missing most. Calmness. Space to think and to daydream. On my own.  

The importance of having time to think 

While the country has been on lockdown, these snatched minutes of peace have reduced to almost zero. And when I do manage to catch them, they’re always being chased down. For my husband and I, being cooped up in a house with a four-year-old and an 18-month-old does not lend itself to calm. More chaos.  

Our allocated daily exercise does not offer any respite as we also need to involve the kids and burn off their excess energy. So even my regular walk with the dogs has been invaded.  

I have realised that this is what I’m currently missing most – calm. Space to think and to daydream. On my own. 

 Finding space to tell a compelling story 

Precious, peaceful time is needed to get the idea right. The right idea is required to develop a compelling story. And a compelling story is essential to develop an engaging creative campaign.  

But I have managed to find the calm in my household. And I have found it at 5am. Before the sun has fully risen, and the dawn chorus is in full swing. Before the other members of my household are awake and my day is spent juggling demanding children with demanding colleagues and clients. This is a time of peace. Of silence. Of calm. 

I certainly don’t leap out of bed at 5am, log on and start bashing the keyboard. I’m not a robot. 

But I think. And read. And percolate. And mull ideas about stories over.  

And thus, creativity comes.