I think that we all love creating art. Often, our passion for what we
do can easily drift into unbalance as we work towards our goals.
Everyone knows the adrenaline of starting – that feeling is
intoxicating. The clarity of perspective we have as we approach a
project can be some of our best times. So, we go in. We work with
intensity and passion. We work so hard that often we forget to break,
to eat, or to ever stop. The intensity and passion with which we
approach our art often makes us lose sight of the initial vision, goal
or perspective. Sometimes, stepping away for a second can change
Disney’s Pixar studio has a very intentional practice that their
animators use when working on art. It’s the 20/20/20 rule and it is
Every 20 minutes
look 20 feet away
for 20 seconds.
Pretty simple. Maybe even ignorantly simple. Every 20 minutes, take a
break. Look 20 feet away. This will interrupt our focus just enough
to allow us to regain perspective. Only for 20 seconds, though – you
don’t want to lose focus or too much intensity. This gives just enough
of a recalibration so we can continue creating our absolute best work.
Applying this simple rule to our art provides us with the ability to
stay fresh and intense longer, maintain proper focus, and see any
potential issues sooner. Don’t believe it? Set a timer. Next time
you’re working on a project and are battling fatigue, start using the
20/20/20 rule and see how much better your process becomes.