The impressive mural in the picture below mysteriously appeared on a wall in the University of Connecticut Art Department one morning. Apparently a group of students erected it during the night, when no one was around. I Googled the phrase, but nothing really came up. It doesn't appear to be a famous quote, but yet it spoke to me on several levels.
|THE PROCESS OF FAILURE IS GREATER THAN THE PRODUCT OF SUCCESS.|
So, what does it mean? The following thoughts came to mind:
- The process is what matters. The process is where we grow, learn and develop as artists, people/spiritual beings.
- We often learn far more from our failures than from our successes.
- As uncomfortable as it may be, stepping out of our comfort zones, stretching ourselves, and trying new things/approaches is of paramount importance if we don't want to stagnate.
- It is better to try and fail than not to try at all. (OK, now I'm starting to sound overtly cliché.)
I think a lot about my process when writing music. I walk a fine line in trying to be as efficient as possible with my time, while often trying new methods and approaches. However, I think there are some steps I take consistently at the various stages of composing and arranging pieces.
This mural got me thinking... Maybe I should take a closer look at my approach to artistic creation. Here's what I plan to do: I was recently hired to write two big band arrangements of compositions written by Canadian jazz drummer, Tyler Hornby. I hope to complete them over the next couple of weeks. On this blog I will share my methodology, as well as my observations from self examination during the process. Hopefully I will learn something about myself and the systems I employ while providing you with some insight into what goes into writing a big band chart.
Ultimately, failure is not an option for me here, but I do anticipate that there will be a few along the way. Something would probably be wrong if there weren't. :) I hope you will come along for the ride.