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For Quinn Whitney Wilson, getting messy is part of the creative process. Whether it’s curating a world tour for American singer and rapper Lizzo, or directing a new music video, Quinn takes on creative blocks like stereotypes — you just need to crush them.
As part of our Go create project, we joined Quinn on set in Kyiv in Ukraine and at her home in Los Angeles to explore her creative process, and to catch a glimpse of the world through her eyes captured with the new Polaroid Go camera.
Developing: When does inspiration come most easily to you?
Quinn: Inspiration comes most easily for me when I am able to experience whatever I am working with in a tactile way. I really like to use my hands when I am working, and even if it means printing out pictures or cutting up a piece of paper that’s maybe like a texture or a color, just being able to use swatches and materials and tactile things during the creative process really helps me shape whatever I will be working on creatively.
Developing: How do you typically start your creative process?
Q: I start my creative process with a ton of research and a ton of post-it notes. I have to really handwrite everything in order to feel I am connected to whatever I am creating.
Developing: How has the Go played a role in your creative process?
Q: The Polaroid Go has been really helpful. Being able to just have it by my side when I find inspiration, or when I have a memory or an interaction that I want to remember. It’s really handy, and small enough that it fits literally in any bag that I bring with me.
Developing: What is something you wish people understood about the creative process?
Q: I wish people understood that it can be really messy to be creative. And when I say messy, I mean like internally. I feel like a mess half the time. I feel so uncreative some days and so creative other days, and that’s just a part of the process. Not every day has to be most creatively fulfilling. All that matters is that you try every single day to be as creative as you possibly can, and eventually you will get the hang of it.
Developing: How do you get out of a creative block?
Q: I go through creative blocks every single day. At a certain point in the day, I feel like it is so difficult to get my ideas out or to get past a slump, but I just wake up in the morning and I do it again. And over time, I realized that it is kind of what my process is. It’s not stopping even though it feels difficult sometimes to get my ideas or thoughts out or to even feel creative at all. It is just part of the process, and I’ve learnt to love it, and to know that it is never going to stop me from being fully and happily creative.
“The Polaroid Go has been really helpful. Being able to just have it by my side when I find inspiration, or when I have a memory or an interaction that I want to remember. It’s really handy, and small enough that it fits literally in any bag.”
Developing: How have you stayed inspired over the past year?
Q: I took this past year as a way to reconnect with a lot of my references and resources; to become reconnected to who I was as a younger creative person. I think when we are given time and space it is a lot easier to remember that most of the things that we are attracted to are things we have always been attracted to.
Developing: Share an example of how something inspired you and what did you made from that inspiration?
Q: I was inspired by this reference that King Princess showed me from a Weezer music video from the early 2000s, and there’s this specific color of blue that I really fell in love with. I ended up incorporating it into the music video that I made with her called ‘Pain’. I feel like pulling references even if it’s just a color or a texture or a pattern can be so fulfilling for newer projects.
“I feel so uncreative some days and so creative other days, and that’s just a part of the process. Not every day has to be most creatively fulfilling. All that matters is that you try every single day to be as creative as you possibly can, and eventually you will get the hang of it.”
Developing: What recommendations would you give to your fellow creatives seeking inspiration?
Q: If you are seeking inspiration — although this might sound corny — I do really stand behind thinking about yourself and maybe what you liked as a kid or what you listened to as a teenager or what film you and a parent, sibling or friend watched over and over again. It’s those things that you liked when you were younger, when you were creating for anyone else other than yourself, that are the most important references.
Developing: What excites you most about the Go create project?
Q: It’s been exciting to be a part of the Go create project. To remember that documenting parts of my process, including shoots that I might be on or even when I am just gardening, count as important memories and references that I can use later on. The Polaroid Go makes it really easy for me to capture these really important moments.
Developing: What’s your dream project?
Q: My dream project is working with a team of people that I genuinely care about, from the crew to the talent to whoever is working in post. I really care about the relationships with the people I create with, and I feel that is pretty much the dream: to work with your friends and family and loved ones.
Developing: What do you hope to achieve with the Go create project?
Q: I hope to show young people an example of an artist who is vulnerable enough to show that she fumbles a lot, but continues to be creative because I have to.
Developing: What’s next for you?
Q: Next, I plan on doing a lot of directing. I want to have a feature. I want to have a series. I want to do a ton of music videos. I want to do a lot of things all at once, which is kind of my nature. I plan on doing all of those things, at least once.
Get up-close with the next generation of creators with our Go create project. Check out this interview with Arlo Parks: the British singer-songwriter sensation opens up about how she finds fresh inspiration to make her music. Or get out there and Go create with the new Polaroid Go camera.