In the white room

In the White Room_002

At the start of every new project there is a white room I walk into. Empty, blank and mystifying, the white room is a humbling place.

It’s the writer’s fresh sheet of paper, the painter’s blank canvas, and the sculptor’s block of stone.

Have you ever given a blank piece of paper to a child? They don’t fear it. They grab their crayons and just start. Undaunted, they dive headfirst into the white room and pour what they have into it. And they don’t spend time getting ducks into neat little rows.

To so many of us, the white room is a terrifying and paralysing space. It’s the home to so many of our false starts and failures. Like a great sucking undertow, the mysterious white room can feel like it’s robbing us of the very surface on which we stand.

The white room is a moment of truth. Many, upon being thrust into the white room, will find a way to walk or run right back out of it. Anywhere, anything, anybody feels better than that god-awful space. Naps, household chores, brushing pets, vapid texting, social media, aimless web surfing… these are all handy escape chutes from the white room.

But for those who stay, for those who treat it like a real job, for those who see it as a calling; the white room is what makes them who they are. Filling this space is their very identity. Without the white room, where would they pour the creativity that pressure cooks their insides?

The white room is potential, it is magic waiting to happen, it is the space between the composer’s fingertips and the pearly keys of her piano. What a wonderful space.

Today, I’m just appreciating being, in the white room.

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