The Concept of Content
There seems to be confusion about the ideas of content. It is really very simple the question is where are you trying to go? Generally Form does follows Content. That means that first you decide on an idea and then you make a plan as to how to get there. Writers begin with a story line, architects with vision, musicians with a mood, and artist with a feeling or function.
The builders of the great pyramids did not begin by laying stone in hopes it would turn out to be a tomb, Shakespeare did not arrange words in hopes of making a tragedy, and Picasso did not make geometric shapes and invent cubism.
Each of these builders of art began with an idea, sometimes a vague idea, but non-the-less an idea. In the case of these artists their ideas took to very special form. It is a mistake to burden we mortals with the quest for greatness and profoundness. We do not need great ideas we simply need an idea.
A group of artists look down a set of railroad tracks: one sees a road to fascinating places yet to be explored, another sees lines converging in space and explores mathematics in art, some hear the sounds of metal against metal and writes music, another recalls the great depression and the men who road the rails in search of work and survival and wrote a book, a person recalls the pride our country once felt for the railroads and now how we feel no pride but fear and frustrations.
I feel sorry for all those artists who believe that technique and design are art and for those who learn the tricks of other misguided technicians and who are robbed of the joy of the creative process. The process is first have and idea, give it form, and rejoice when your creation feels good not because of technique and design but because it was your idea.