Flakeproofing: Cache your creative weapons where you need them

by Carlo Carino

One of six sketch books I keep around

I have six active sketch books — one in the car, one at my desk at work, in my shoulder bag, in my laptop bag, in my living room at home and a mini sketchbook in my pocket.

Why? The answer comes from Terminator 2: Judgement Day ... but first, some background.

About four months ago, I resolved to do a new drawing every single day. I would bring a pocket sketchbook with me at all times.

I started out great and did it regularly — for all of six days.

After three months, what should have been at least 70 or 80 drawings amounted to just 12.

Did I give up? Did I put it off? No and no.  I just forgot to bring my sketch book with me.

If I didn't have my sketchbook in front of me, I simply forgot to draw.

Trying to boost your skill level at anything requires working at it continuously. My major problem with this has never been the working part. It's been doing anything continuously.

Improving at anything creative is just like trying to boost your physical fitness. You can put in a good workout once in a while, but the benefits never come if you can't go to the gym regularly.

It's hard to fight your nature. So sometimes it's smarter to just work around it.

Instead battling my memory every day, I decided to take my memory out of the equation. Hence the multiple sketch books in every place I live my life. Just to make it easier, I also made sure a pen was attached to all of them. So now I can keep on working on the new habit without the worry of forgetting the essential tools. It's working so far.

Maybe this strategy (extreme though it may be) can work for you. If you know you have to write everyday, why not leave a notepad and pencil in all places you inhabit during the day? If you want to work out, but always leave your gym bag behind, why not leave a cache of clothes in several convenient places?

You can trust Enrique with your stuff.If it helped Sarah Connor to be ready with her desert arsenal in Terminator 2, it can work for you in your non-robot-destroying daily work. By thinking ahead, she had her tools where she needed them and didn't have to spend extra effort on trying to make sure, John and 'Uncle Bob' were armed. They stopped Judgement Day ... imagine how much more you could do if you had your own cache?