You often read that artists or writers tend to sit in cafés, drink a good cup of coffee and write down interesting ideas, when inspiraton hits them.
I don’t know about this. Sure, I sit in cafés now and then, but that is the exception.
But I do know about trains!
I’ve mentioned a few times that I do most of my film related work on my everyday train rides. As I work in another city (and hate car driving) I spend approximately 15 hours a week on trains, metros, waiting for trains and, guess what, waiting for metros.
And you can always complain about what you do not have. But this won’t bring you very far. Of course, I would love to have the time to sit at a real table, without the shaking, without the changing light conditions, and not sitting in a crowded wagon without air conditioning, together with swetting people in summer. But that’s not the life I have. And maybe your conditions aren’t perfect, either.
So, fuck it, what I try to do is making the best of it! From the 3 hours I spend every day travelling there are 2×30 minutes left every day in which I am actually sitting in a shaky train. I’ve tried doing different tasks in the last two years in order to use this time productively and these are the things I learnt that can and cannot be done:
- Drawing a comic – Not really. I am still trying, though! Maybe I need a flux capasitor.
- Doing elaborate illustrations and production drawings –> Bad idea.
- Taking (card) notes for screenplays –> Oh, yes!
- Writing a screenplay –> Very difficult, but doable.
- Checking out iPad apps –> If you have downloaded them beforehand, yes.
- Writing blog posts –> Yes.
- Formating blog posts –> No.
- Formating scanned pictures and foto material –> No.
- Creating 3 D asssets for my shortfilms on the tablet –> Are you kidding me?
- Creating task lists and doing organisatory stuff –> Yes.
- Getting some much needed sleep –> Try again.
- Mailing with those who help doing my films –> Yes, but only where the tablet can find an internet connection.
- Drawing storyboards –> Yes, because they don’t have to be perfect.
- Drawing quick sketches and concept ideas –> Oh, yes, please! But only on the double decker train at 6:55 AM. I love double decker trains.
- Looking into the eyes of the deer that stands curiously near the track between my second and third station on the way to work –> About once every month, but not in winter. 🙂
You see, you can always complain about the things you do not have, or make something of what you have.
What are your challenges and how do you overcome them? Feel free to comment!
By they way: As I am writing this the old lady in front of me is doing a series of gymnastic exercises – on the train! I was able to take a picture at the end, when she was stretching and did not notice I was taking a picture.