Everything you create has an impact.
So, you need to decide:
- What kind of impact do you want to create?
- Are you willing to do what’s required?
You can save yourself a lot of time and avoid a lot of frustration, by getting clear on your answers to those questions.
There’s a wonderful quote from Albert Szent-Györgyi, which I’d like to share with you. It’s a simple, powerful insight into how geniuses think creatively.
“Genius is seeing what everyone else sees and thinking what no one else has thought.”
Szent-Györgyi is best known, as the man who discovered vitamin C. Vitamin C had always been there. Every time someone ate an orange, they were holding, looking at and consuming vitamin C. However, no one before Albert Szent-Györgyi had ever thought about vitamin C.
Creative thinking: From oranges to apples
Millions of people saw apples fall from trees. It was only Sir Isaac Newton who asked, “why?”.
Here’s the thing: We each possess a unique mind. However, it takes courage to use it uniquely… rather than accept perceived wisdom and false limitations.
In a 1963 speech, President John F Kennedy made a powerful statement regarding the importance of artistic freedom.
“If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him. […]”
It’s natural to think of oppressive regimes when we consider freedoms being suppressed. However, just as “society must set the artist free” to follow their vision, the artist also needs to liberate themselves. They need to break free from the barriers that stop them from producing their best work. Principally, this means overcoming the fear of criticism, which stops millions of people from creating and sharing their art.
As Andy Warhol famously said: “Don’t think about making art. Just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they’re deciding, make even more art.”
That’s worth considering, the next time you think you’re suffering from a creative block.
Photo credit: ARTwear.ch
Creativity takes courage. That’s because an essential element of creativity is the willingness to make mistakes.
The challenge is that we have been programmed to think of mistakes as failures. They are not. Mistakes are stepping stones on the way to our best art or work. Mistakes provide us with proof… proof that we are trying something new, rather than playing it safe within our comfort zone.
Here’s a suggestion
If you find yourself suffering from any kind of creative block, give yourself permission to make more mistakes.
Just don’t keep repeating the same mistake. Learn, adjust and move on.
Apple’s Jonathan Ive shares some thoughts on the role of simplicity in design:
“Simplicity is not the absence of clutter, that’s a consequence of simplicity. Simplicity is somehow essentially describing the purpose and place of an object and product. The absence of clutter is just a clutter-free product. That’s not simple”.
Anyone can remove clutter. Simplicity requires us to understand what the basics are and to have the courage to ignore the rest.