I loved Wired’s feature on Pixar a few months back. Pixar is one of those companies that is so creative and so collaborative that I always enjoy reading about their culture and their processes. And while I liked the article a lot, the element that most stuck out to me was the timeline for creating Toy Story 3. It starts as you might expect: an entry titled, “Day 1.” The creative team heads out to a remote cabin and hammers out the film’s plot.
For some reason, my eyes skipped down to the bottom of the timeline. The final entry: “Day 1,084.” Wow!
As someone who spends a few weeks on articles and two months on an issue of a magazine, I was blown away by the scope of Pixar’s Toy Story 3 production timeline. As I pondered spending three years on a single project, something clicked in my brain.
Great art — really great art — takes time.
I know that’s not a fantastic revelation by any means, but the more I think about it, the more I feel conviction to give each project the time it needs. Maybe as you read this you’re thinking that you’re already out of time, already stretched too thin by too many projects with restrictive deadlines.
And maybe that’s the case. Maybe there is no time. If so, what’s a person to do?
Well, I don’t know. I haven’t figured that out yet. All I know is that if I want to make my Toy Story 3 or paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, I’m going to have to make the time. Great art takes time.
Can you remember the last time you actually let “time” not be a factor in creating something?