Music and the Creative Process

December 16, 2014
Posted in Design, Music
December 16, 2014 tro4130

Music and the Creative Process

I, like many, love listening to music while I work. To me, it’s part of my creative process. A few years ago I noticed an interesting change in my artwork depending on the type of music I was listening to. I also discovered that certain music tended to bring out much more creative ideas quicker than other types of music. In short, certain genres in music influence creativity greater than other genres. Ambient, electronic, and classical music tend to bring out the most creative ideas and increase productivity in my experience.


I’ve created a large playlist of music I like to listen to when I design. I created this list out of a long list of specific Artist playlists I have created and currently add to. I prefer to have a large list of different music to skip around from song to song. Since I chose the music, it’s mostly of all artists and songs I like. There are a few bad apples here and there and I erase songs I do not like and continue to add artists and songs I do like. The list changes as my preference in music changes as well. Have a listen and subscribe if you like what you hear in what I call, MUSIC FOR DESIGNERS – Graphic Design Music.




Can Music be a “Creativity Booster?”


“There’s a mounting body of evidence that shows that many of the most successful and brilliant among us have studied music at some point in their life. I don’t necessarily think that music has some magical ability to make us smarter. Rather, it just gives our brain an opportunity to practice abstract and creative thought. Creativity isn’t easy, it takes practice.” [ quoted Huffington Post, Online]

Music gives the brain an opportunity to practice abstract and creative thought? Music is everywhere and a constant in many individuals lives. Music enhances and increases our emotional attachment to people and things but can it enhance our design? The short video below talks of music in Ancient Greece and how music was seen as the key to understanding the cosmos. Well, if one can understand that, I’m sure being creative isn’t very far out of their realm…


The next question I had was if music could increase productivity. I was reminded of one of my favorite blogs I follow, ‘The Sparring Mind,‘ in which a blog post talks specifically on this subject! Gregori Ciotti, author and creator of ‘Sparring Mind’, states in his blog, “For those that do benefit in listening to music during creative sessions, an “ambient” presence of music appears to work best. Researchers have shown that a moderate noise level can really get creative juices flowing, but that too much noise has the opposite effect.”

A popular TED Talk titled ‘The Four Ways Sounds Affect Us’ talks of how sounds are important in our day to day lives.

It appears that study and research, as well as anceint history, have proven that music is indeed an integral part to creativity and can have an effect on ones productivity. The next question would then be,

How does your music influence your workflow and creativity? And more importantly, what and who do you listen to when you work?

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Trevor is a Website Developer and Designer who can be found spending time with his family in the great outdoors.

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