Relieving friction

  • On January 20, 2011 ·
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Merlin Mann‘s mentioned this concept before, usually when talking about typing. There’s all sorts of keyboard shortcuts you can do to keep from bothering with the mouse. All types of apps and scripts to do things in one step to save time.

Distractions can be big and they can be tiny. Sometimes you’ll hit a snag and something will take your entire day to clear up. Other times it’s your attention that gets stolen. As I’ve gotten older I’ve become more aware of the gear shifting that goes on mentally to get stuff done. Though I make art I don’t really think visually so much. I tend to think conceptually and when it comes to making images I have to move into a different space in my head. And whenever there’s a transition there’s always a chance of getting hung up on something.
I bought a notebook app the other day to get myself organized. A key reason I chose this product over the many others out there is it supported digital drawing tablets for sketching. There are awesome drawing programs I plan on using to more seriously develop my art, but those don’t also let you store notes and reference files in one convenient place. Now I can jump from typing up a script to thumbnailing it on the same virtual page if I want. The advantage to this is twofold. I plan on working more digitally in the future so the directness is appreciated. Also I don’t have the mental hangup of dealing with paper.
I love drawing on paper but I have issues dealing with it’s inflexibility sometimes. If it’s bristol I tend to treat it like it’s precious and I’m always afraid of slicing into it while drawing, scarring it or some other problem I can’t work around. And if I’m working in a sketchbook I always want to keep related stuff together. Of course it’s better to just dump ideas as they come to you but how do you organize that for later? You have to work in loose sheets and sort it after the fact. Digitally I can resort entire sections as I need them after I do the necessary brain dumping.
That’s what it’s about, really. Moving things out of the way to just let the work happen. I converted this blog into a tumblog to make it less mentally intimidating in the hopes of posting more. I switched web browsers yesterday to cut back on an error that kept wasting my time and aggravating me. I bought a notebook app to organize my ideas and turn them into todo lists and actionable plans. I’m making it easier for myself to do things. Here’s hoping I can keep that up and stay out of my own way long enough to do something awesome.