Monday, January 18, 2010

Introducing Five {5} Creative Questions

Five {5} Creative Questions is a new feature I am starting this year on the blog. Each month, I plan to highlight a different creator and have them answer the same 5 questions on creativity, their creative process and inspiration. I hope you enjoy!

Our first guest is the talented Dee Wilcox, who you may already know from the fantastic blog, Creative Perch.

Dee is a graphic designer, marketer, and writer. A little bit about Dee… she is 50% right-brained and 50% left-brained. Her interests are rather eclectic, and she believes the combination of these two qualities makes her a better writer. She loves trend-watching and all things design. She believes that public art can raise the spirit of a community and lift the individual spirit, as well. She loves the art and process of creating. Creating is in her blood. Her creative bent is her favorite thing about herself.

1. What does creativity mean to you?
I believe creativity is both an innate ability and a skill that we can develop to bring a creative approach to every aspect of our lives. In other words, creativity allows us to bring new ideas and concepts and approaches into existence that were never there before. It also allows us to tweak current ideas, develop a new perspective, and see things in new ways.

2. What is your creative process, and what tools do you use to stimulate it?
My creative process generally begins with working a problem over in my mind. I become aware of a new challenge, or that something is lacking in a particular area or project. Sometimes I "sit" with the idea for awhile - I think about it in an inactive way. For example, I might keep a particular problem in the back of my mind while I am working in my garden or walking my dog. Other times, I begin the brainstorming process right away, and then let the ideas incubate for a while. Usually either after the brainstorming or incubation process, I find what seems like might be a potential route or approach to tackling the problem or project. From there, it is usually trial and error until I come up with something that seems like a fit. Then, I test it - usually by asking people I trust for feedback. Usually, at that point the process begins again.

The tools I use to stimulate my creative process can vary quite a bit. I rely a lot on the Internet and on relationships. I am constantly reading magazines and blogs, and I use Evernote to clip ideas that inspire me. The Internet is also great for researching topics that I have absolutely no knowledge about. I rely on relationships to give me real world feedback. I also invest in experiences and resources - these often expand my creative horizons in ways I could never achieve on my own.

3. What is your most creative time of day?
I am usually most creative in the morning, before I've checked my email. My mind is clear, and the house is quiet. I can think with more clarity, and when I am writing, words seem to flow more easily. Occasionally I'll have a creative burst in the afternoon or late evening, but I try to plan time in the morning to work on projects that require my best.

4. How do you infuse creativity into your daily life and tasks?
Many times, I have to intentionally make room for creativity, especially when a day's projects or tasks feel the farthest thing from creative. I make time to read blogs by creative people, and I listen to music that inspires me throughout the day. I have a "go-to" playlist in my iTunes that really helps me get into a creative groove. Another way that I try to keep a creative atmosphere going on even my most un-creative days is by crafting my environment. I have a workspace that is full of things that inspire me, and when that isn't working for me, I spend the day working in a stimulating environment - a coffeeshop, a bookstore, a museum.

5. What creative tip or resource would you like to share with our readers?
The difference-maker for me is always honoring the fact that we are made creative. We were never intended to shut out our creative selves in pursuit of other, perhaps more "practical" qualities. Making time for creativity refreshes the heart and can in turn influence every other aspect of life. To me, creativity isn't something that I have time for on the weekends. It has become something I honor and make room for in my life every day.
  • THANKS Dee!

1 comment:

Rebecca said...

Hi! Just found your blog - great post. I think creativity is a skill that we can develop over time.. we may have an innate ability but we need to work hard at it too.