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  • Writer's picturePaul M. Wood

1. How to achieve balance in a creative collaboration?

Updated: Jun 8, 2020

Collaboration is an essential unifier and a challenge to prove out ability of us all to find enough common ground to create together. This skillset is especially needed to bridge today’s divides! I know many creators who absolutely abhor the idea that you can successfully collaborate without a dire sacrifice of integrity and individual vision. I’ve always held strongly to the view that there is a fundamental value in collaboration that reinforces, not diminishes, and strengthens rather than compromise. In this series, I want to show the journey of collaboration as I have experienced and learned crucial lessons that might provide a guidance to promote and enable this most important skillset in these times of polarization.

In the agreement to work as collaborators on a creative project, there is always at best an implicit understanding of equalizing; you both contribute, and the shared power derives from the fusion of energies and modulation of ideas. That is the delicate balance of the collaborative dynamic.

I firmly believe that the whole that results from a great collaboration is greater than sum of its solo parts. It forces one out of the solitary grind of being the solo originator.

And it’s fraught with challenges in the dance of ego, intent, judgement, fear, joy, and fulfillment.

I want to explore the means and the responsibility of collaboration, and along the way the failures and missteps in the process that can either result in a split or a strength.

Why collaborate?

There are the egos that are self-sustaining as in; I can totally do all of my creation on my own, thank you very much. Or I’m not going to expose anyone else to my process which I cannot share, and as it is I can barely explain no less line it up with anyone else’s process.

And there is a meeting point of intent and contribution that is reassurance, reinforcement, and a joy in unique sharing.

I’m interested in picking up the threads of collaborative connection, as each participant has their own threads and together that causes an entanglement that is messy, vacillating, dynamic, explosive, thrilling and moderating, all at the same time.

Ultimately I’m looking to elevate a new kind of collaboration that is at the root the building of COMMUNITY as its best result, since I see a direct line from collaboration to community.

Next we’ll explore an example of a critical strengthening moment and a destructive action in a collaboration.

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