I just recently read a book called Daily Rituals: How Artists Work. In the book, “161 inspired and inspiring minds, among them, novelists, poets, playwrights, painters, philosophers, scientists, and mathematicians, who describe how they subtly manoeuvre the many (self-inflicted) obstacles and (self-imposed) daily rituals to get done the work they love to do, whether by waking early or staying up late; whether by self-medicating with doughnuts or bathing, drinking vast quantities of coffee, or taking long daily walks.”
I don’t work hanging upside down by my feet, take client calls in the nude or do anything too out there but I do have a set of daily rituals that help me get things done. Since I highly doubt my daily activities will ever make it into a published book alongside Charles Dickens and Andy Warhol, I figured I could share it here.
I get up every day at 6am (or earlier, dependant on the kids). First thing is always coffee. Strong coffee – basically a mug full of espresso shots and a dash of milk. Then to wake up, I check a few blogs/sites such as Seth Godin, Motionographer, 99U and my Vimeo and Dribbble feeds. Sometimes I’ll read a few pages from a magazine (usually New Scientist or the New Yorker, stark contrasts to the masses of graphic novels I consume) and then before 6:30 am, I start work…
The first 15 minutes is usually catching up on a few emails and posting some content for client review. Then it’s generally tasks such as editing scripts, story boarding or sketching concepts and ideas.
Between 7:30 to 8.00 am I make everyone breakfast, drink more coffee and take a shower. I get a little time with the wife and kids, help them get ready and then at 9:00 it’s back to the office. After a half hour or so, I climb into a hollowed out tree and drink a pint of broth.
Most days, it’s explainer video production in After Effects and Cinema 4D, client calls and email until about 1:00 pm when I stop for lunch and quit for the day. There’s a lot of adding things to lists and slightly less of marking things off lists. I tend to stop and sketch random things which helps me come up with ideas. Often, I’ll fit in a quick walk or a trip to our allotment. Sometimes I’ll come back to the office to render and send files or jump on afternoon calls and when we have rush jobs in, the 1 pm finish can be pushed as late as 11 pm.
Then after that, it’s time with my family, baking bread, cooking meals and taking the kids out. The day usually winds down at 8:00 pm, once the kids are asleep and we drink red wine, eat Hotel Chocolat and either watch TV or read.