I’m recovering today from the whirlwind of last two days, feeling so amazed by all the talent on display and impressed with the hundreds of creative people present at the same conference, sharing their knowledge and skills with one another.
I’ve been thinking about creativity a lot, what it means, how to channel it, where it comes from, and how to use those inspired ideas to turn them into something satisfying and tangible. Children are great examples of creativity in action. Their minds are free to make up worlds and crafts and ideas and art with their wild imaginations and most express themselves creatively without reservation.
But then something happens as we grow. We start to care what others will think and then we squelch our creativity deep down out of fear. I think that’s where the common phrase “I’m not creative” comes from, our adult shell refusing to let our childlike inspiration run free. I believe we’re all born creative, and as adults, we need to consciously tap into those ideas, those feelings, those moments, and take action to express them, whether it’s writing or photography or art or design or whatever subject it is that brings forth those unique ideas.
On this topic, I asked a few ladies who express their own creativity with great confidence and finesse to share their personal definitions. I hope you enjoy their responses as much as I do.
“Creativity often happens for me when I’m out and about in Mother Nature (even if it’s only the Urban Jungle). It’s combinations of color especially blow me away, like the trees in a forest whose perfect shadings of multiple greens and browns inspired my living room walls and trim.” – Elaine Griffin, Interior Designer
“The thing about creativity is that it works best with three ingredients that most of us try to avoid. The first is margin, you know like white space. I do my best creative work when I give myself permission to mess around with no expectations if I know I need to be done in 15 minutes my creativity is squelched. Creativity takes unscheduled time.
The other ingredients? Risk and limitations. If you don’t take a risk then you aren’t really being creative are you? And those pesky limitations? Those are the parameters where the creativity happens. My most creative days last year were when I worked ahead of time and decorated for my sister’s book release party. I limited myself to decorating with only book pages and then I had time to take big risks knowing if something didn’t work out, I could make something else.” – Nester from Nesting Place