Art emerges through the act of creativity. It comes through many forms. McNiff shares our minds respond to what shows up, rather than having control over what emerges. We are but the conduit for creativity expressed. Our task is to remain connected to this flow without any pressure toward the outcome, Often we have an illusion of control, yet the creative process has an energy on its own. McNiff states “creative writers insist it is the characters who create the story.” The mind is only the entry point for creativity. He offered several strategies to support the creative process such as being appreciate of what emerges through spontaneous play. When one is forcing an expected outcome, he finds this delays the work, no matter the medium. Another suggested strategy is to take a pause to reflective on the movement of the brush if painting, or how other materials react to each other. To practice being in the gratitude of the process, appreciative for the expression. He returns the reader to focus on one’s perspective toward their creating, to become aware of the judgmental and overreactive thoughts. He recommends a daily practice within one’s medium, no matter whether it is drawing, playing piano, or dancing. Some sort of daily practices to engage with the movements of creating. One has to shift from reactionary to responding to the “intelligence of creative expression. Most of our schooling has been about creating a replica of what we see rather than along an interpretation. He offers a reflective exercise to recall the people in one's life who have influenced their direction.
I encourage you to buy a copy of Imagination in Action for a better understanding of your own creative process. Whether you're a master artist or beginning artist, this is an excellent book.