The Happy Hexagon
A Concept For A Design Principle by Evan Kreeger
The shape of a hexagon applied to the artistic process results in the satisfactory completion of a creative project.
The geometric shape of a hexagon is found in both the natural and built worlds. The happy hexagon principle combines biomimicry, geometry and visualization to catalyze a process of private imagination(s) evolving into public realities. The six sides of a hexagon are translated into six sequential steps that help people and/or groups complete creative projects: exploration, preparation, making, finishing, advocating and sharing.
Exploration refers to substantively exploring the individual’s and/or groups’ personal feelings, ideas, physicality and spirituality. Examples include yearning, brainstorming, fitness and dreams. Because exploration is the very first step, it is the foundation upon which all the other steps are built upon.
Preparation refers to the individual and/or groups’ choosing a creative vehicle for themselves that provides an adequate means of self-expression. It also refers to the person and/or people realistically figuring out how they will achieve their artistic goals over time. Examples include budgeting, collaborating, funding, learning, organizing, prototyping, researching and scheduling.
Making refers to the actual creation of the chosen project. Examples include composing, directing, painting and writing. Because the making phase is often where many creative people get chronically stuck — e.g. boredom, confusion, exhaustion, quitting, procrastination, self-doubt, — it is essential that the previous exploration and preparation phases are genuinely finalized beforehand.
Finishing refers to the creative project being privately realized in such a way that satisfies some, most or all of the creator’s/creators’ objectives. Examples include a wearable piece of clothing, a new building being opened to the public, a domestic robot being shipped to a reseller and a final draft of a manuscript. It is important to clarify that finishing is not the same thing as definitive completion of the project; there are two additional steps.
Advocating refers to the creative project being promoted to the niche groups it is most likely to connect with. Examples include advertising, contests, publicity tours, social media campaigns, sneak previews and volunteer workshops.
Sharing refers to distributing the finished creative project to its appropriate niche groups. Examples include gallery exhibits, Video on demand screenings, live performances and brick and mortar sales. Once the sharing step is realized, the creative project has organically completed a full life cycle.
Although the happy hexagon design principle can be used in isolation, it can also be combined with one or more additional design principles (e.g. 80/20 rule, fibonacci sequence, five hat racks, modularity, storytelling, etc.)