What is creativity? Is it nurtured and cared for throughout your formative years or is it a genetic trait passed down from artistic parents to their offspring?
Creativity is sometimes made into a yes or no question, a black and white observance — you either got it or you don’t. Have you heard these sentences come out of your own mouth or one of your friends, classmates, siblings?
“I’m not creative.”
“I wasn’t born with that ability.”
“Creativity is not something I’m good at.”
These are the unhelpful tripes, that is, excuses used to absolve ourselves from the responsibility creative work demands. Creativity is a human trait. It is what separates us from all other mammals — the ability to look at an obstacle, conceptualize, and deliver an assortment of solutions depending on the context. As humans we actively seek out problems to solve and in the process create culture, industry, and societies out of the ideas in our heads.
Creativity is not for a class of people, it is for everyone.
Creativity is a skill and we need to think about it as we do any other competence; it is an ability requiring practice, failure, time, and progression. The artist was once an amateur, the musician was once a pupil, and the builder was once an apprentice. Framing creativity as a skill moves it away from the realm of ideas and dreams and into reality. Creativity is found in movement. It is the verb within the story.
What is creativity but envisioning a future scene and bringing it to life? Can creativity be labeled if there was not something deposited? Must there be an artifact of the creativity?
What is creativity without delivery? A dream? An idea?
Creativity is seeing something not yet seen and building something visible.
Creativity is feeling something not yet felt and manifesting something touchable.
Creativity is hearing something not yet heard and recording something audible.
Creativity is a verb sandwiched between nouns.
The artist paints pictures. The musician plays a song. The writer types stories. The architect manipulates spaces. The builder constructs a house. The developer codes experiences. The designer iterates patterns. The newcomer begins the work.
I feel the most alive when I am building my own dreams, writing my own stories and painting my own scene.
I’m more comfortable in the verb than with the noun.
Begin your great work by first getting comfortable in the verb, because only in the verb can others observe you as the noun.