Back in the day artworks - "Untitled" -2002

Are you ZONING OUT? 
During any creative process, be it dancing, writing, building, reading designing, painting, photography, and exercising, if you are doing it right you are zoning out....but in the best way possible! 

Zone like trance states are where new ideas and concepts magically pop into our heads. Unexpected results, rush in. Answers for problems suddenly solve themselves. The Muse makes a surprise appearance and you best dash to find pen and paper and take great recordings of her dictations through performance, word, song, sketch, or dance move. "She" won't visit you while sitting before a blank canvas or white sheet of paper. She just appears, many times without warning. 

For some, zoning or going into a trance like meditation is very light and almost undetectable. For others it is a very deep and conscious affair. All ancient tribes had their ceremonial rituals, dances, communal chanting and singing to go into a meditative realm to bring a tangible reaction from the invisible. This conjured up new songs, new culture, new art, and new ideas that are still applied today. 

I would dare say that almost every joyful ritual we do in life is unknowingly bringing us closer to this domain. (indicator of what your true role or secret passion is) 

Interviews of every great musician, actor, inventor, programmer, scientist, philosopher, engineer, or artist of the past will reveal that their best work just came to them. It appeared out of nowhere during one of their sessions. All they had to do was "show up". 

Huge egos react badly to this truth and It can be extremely frustrating for the student who wants "how to" instructions and clear recipes to follow. But the greatest, timeless, classic innovative art forms and inventions never work that way. When we show up and perform our zoning out ritual, the magic happens. Time seems to fly by. We are lost in another world. 

i know this may sound like some sort of hokey kung fu spiritual mystical phenomenon for some but I don't know any other way to explain what I do and how I do it. 

Here is one of my intensely emotional zoning trance pieces. I was lost in the process where it seemed to compose itself. All I did was sit in the front row eating popcorn watching the cosmic results on the screen while being surprised by the unexpected. The original title was "likjdfshlgskhfgpw". I typed random letters on the keybpard in mid trance since I don't name things in that mode. Like my other abstract work I was never planning on showing this. We will simply call it "Untitled" for now. 

Like much of my better work, it was that same trance like state where the art painted on it's own. I was the "paintbrush" being used by a something or someone else. and cannot claim full credit for the results. 

I just showed up. 

Derek Santiago 

"If you find yourself writing the story, as opposed to the story writing itself, it's time to stop for the day." 

- Ernest Hemingway