Creating Brain Space: A Field Guide For Designers
Brain space is a clinical term used to describe the room a person has for learning or thriving when their mind is busy keeping them safe. I have set out on a journey to piece together the ways in which designers can harness their creativity by utilizing this space. I’ve researched the parts of our brains that are used when we’re flexing our creative muscles, and compared those to the parts we use when we’re struggling. As it turns out, we can help take control of our creative brain by going on a walk, setting boundaries, engaging in positive friendships, and more. These activities give our lives balance, and prepare us for moments of mind wandering, which is our ideal space for creativity. My methods of design practice center around kinesthetic and therapeutic activity. This includes illustration, collage, watercolor and lino print, creating meaningful imagery and symbols to visually mirror every step of the process. My hope is that each person—the designer, the creative soul, or someone dreaming of being one of these—can find solace here.
Cory Dinsmore is an Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at Colby-Sawyer College in New London, New Hampshire. She lives in Windsor, Vermont with her husband and their dog. Cory draws upon her experiences in clinical mental health and her studies of human development for her approaches in both design and teaching.