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Exploring your interests to fuel your creativity

Hey friends and welcome back to the Alex Makes VR podcast. In today's episode, it's day number 8 of my 10 day challenge where every single day, I'm releasing a podcast episode in the hopes that it inspires and encourages you to take five minutes out of your day, to make progress in some area of your life. What are you up to? What are the things that you've been doing alongside me in this challenge? Let me know on social media. It's @alexmakesvr on Instagram and Twitter.


So I'm recording this podcast episode at 11pm at night, I am high as a kite on sugar because I've eaten a whole Domino's Pizza and two Domino's cookies, because let's be real, who's ordering Domino's and not getting the cookies? If you've not tried Domino's cookies, let me tell you, you are not living your best life. Sorry, if you're listening to this in a country that doesn't have Domino’s. One day though, you should come to the UK and experience Domino's cookies. Okay, that is not what this episode is about.


This is a full transcription of the podcast episode, alternatively you can listen to the podcast episode and other episodes here:


This episode came to me, just as I was about to go to bed, I was just thinking about how electric I find it watching films about space. I was thinking about the science behind the film Interstellar and all the theories that it kind of explores, and all of the kind of conversation that it sparks around those theories and the things that we do and don't know, and it got me like spiralling down this wormhole. Then I was going down a YouTube wormhole, looking into these theories and it got me thinking about how important it is to have interests outside of creativity. Especially in the tech industry, especially with virtual reality, or augmented reality, any kind of…or even photography or videography, where it's a very technical skill. Sometimes, we can spend a bit too much time obsessing over the craft itself. Now, don't get me wrong, that's a great thing. You know, I've been encouraging you all along throughout this challenge to learn a new skill or do something towards your project and part of that might be, you know, going down a YouTube wormhole on how to get the perfect frame or colour theory, colour grading, learning to edit, learning to code. Of course, the hard practical skills, they matter. The theory behind some of those kind of practical skills, they do matter. But equally, if not more important, is the passions that you have for the subjects that you're going to use in your projects. It's no good being the world's best technical filmmaker, if you don't have a subject to make a film about. So it's really important that you listen to your intuition, you pay attention to the things that you're passionate about outside of your creative skills. Yes, of course, I'm saying spend as much time as you want, If you enjoy learning about f stops and exposure settings on a camera, of course, follow your passion, but also have something else.


For me, I love thinking about space theories and philosophy. Life, relationship dynamics, all of that stuff fascinates me. Yours could be something super specific. It could be, you know, a particular subject for a documentary, it could be again, some kind of scientific theory, it could be something really nice. It could be like… that you're a fan of a particular other intellectual property that you're super obsessed with, like I've mentioned several times before in a lot of my keynotes about my passion for Xena The Warrior Princess, and fantasy and sci fi. Living in those worlds in my head was the thing I believe, that ultimately led me here to this career in virtual reality in the first place.


So it's really important to pay attention to those passions, find interests outside of your creativity, that then in turn, it fuels your creativity. Because, you know…I've just watched that film and even though I've watched that film so many times before, I've seen it through this new lens and I've questioned it in a different way. It's got me all excited and fired up again, about the science behind it, about quantum physics and all of that kind of stuff, which in turn, has sparked off loads of ideas in my head around films that I want to make or bits of dialogue. You know one of my favourite scripts and scenes in a film ever is Interstellar and even just watching that scene again, just fired off all these different things in my brain. Like - oh, that could work in the script that I'm working on. You know, I could translate that over into a drama that I've been thinking about. So it's really important. It's so so important to have these other interests, explore them, pay attention to them, have things outside of the realm of your creative skill set. So that when you do come to make that film, when you do come to make that VR game, when you do write that story, It's pulling from these different places you are inspired by and you are enthusiastic about, the other subjects that become the centre of your creative piece.


I hope that makes sense because I am a little bit like buzzing on sugar right now. I feel like in a few episodes ago I was buzzing on strawberry jam and now I'm buzzing on pizza. It's really painting a picture of what the wild life I live guys but I hope that helps. I hope that inspires one of you listening right now to go and check out that film that you remember inspiring you a bit earlier in your career or a film that always puts you in that creative headspace, a bit of music that you listen to, that gets you kind of in that creative flow.


Go and do that and see what happens. Maybe that could be your five minutes for today in making progress?

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