What is creativity? How does it happen? How do we prepare ourselves for it? Or can you at all? Do you have to be a whole-brain thinker, or do you only need the right side of your brain? Can you be rational and logical while being creative? I dedicated a whole issue of M/I/S/C/ to "Creativity" and this is now in bookstores in 25 countries.
Scott Adams, a popular cartoonist suggested, "Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." I don’t think that’s necessarily the case. Mistake is part of anything and applied creativity is no exception, so I can be doing something uncreative and still makes mistakes.
Someone once suggested, “Creativity can never be achieved by imitations, and what is already been introduced.” That’s also not true. Some of the best creative pieces in science, art and engineering are results of imitations and experimentations. It is naïve to say creativity means not imitating.
Creative people usually have a few features that distinguish them from others. First, they posses both a rich body of domain-relevant knowledge and well-developed expressive skills (verbal, body movement or drawing or combination of all). Academics and creative managers like to describe creativity as a process, I think that is just nonsense. I belong to the school of Vinacke, which believes that creative thinking in the arts does not follow any models.
Gestalt philosophers like Wertheimer have also asserted that the process of creative thinking is an integrated line of thought that does not lend itself to the framework implied by the steps of a model. There is no process. It is your brain working. Despite that, many design or creative companies will tell you that they have a four-step process. Don’t be fooled: these are marketing constructs designed by marketers to make clients feel comfortable with what is essentially a messy, inscrutable phenomenon. Leave the boardroom and ask the creative department if they follow a process and you’ll get a very different answer. Or no answer at all.
Trying to reduce creativity to a linear process is counter-intuitive. Real creativity emerges from managed chaos and applied fuzzy logic. It’s never about careful calculations. It is something we will never be able to understand for a long time.
Lots of crazy things happened in this world in 2011, we cannot change the past, but let's use our creativity to make everyday a productive one and make a world a better place. Wishing all readers of Innovation Playground and all my Facebook friends 2012 a year full of HAPPINESS and BLESSINGS!!!