Sandboxes are considered play-spaces. A space where things are created and destroyed continually in a cycle of exploration. With every iteration, new things are learned, new preferences found, and new ideas unveiled.
One of the most important things I’ve learned about playing in a sandbox is that learning how the sandbox functions is integral to having fun. Through every instance of play, we learn what can be done with sand, how much sand we have, where the sandbox itself begins and ends, and other bits of experiential knowledge about the way the sandbox works. It is through this knowledge that familiarity, and by extension confidence, is built. We become confident in our ability to play. We have more fun, discover more things.
I find myself going through this same process for every new project, skill, or space I enter into. In order to be confident and comfortable I search for answers to the following questions:
1) How does the medium I’m using function?
2) What resources do I have access to?
3) What are the limits of the play space?
These questions lead to the answer of another important question:
4) How do I move around this space?
The quicker I answer these questions, the easier, more fluid, the play time becomes. I become more open, because I’m more confident in my playing. The more open I am, the more things come out, the more enjoyable the time. And isn’t the experience of joy one of the goals of playing in sandbox anyway?