creativity archives
“Any reference to constraints that limit creativity is just another way of equating creativity with self-expression, an erroneous and irresponsible idea. Except for personal projects, self-expression has no place in design, but constraint is vital to design. No component fuels creativity more than constraint. Indeed, without constraint, creativity (and design) is irrelevant. The discovery process is mostly about finding constraints, which is why we must do such a thorough job of it.

Constraints are a designer’s best friend. They’re signposts, not shackles. In a sense, constraints amount to the solution half-built. It is merely up to us to then realize the other half according to what these signposts indicate is appropriate. Nowhere in this concept does self-expression find any valid foothold.”
Taken from an article written by Andy Rutledge on March 4, 2008 titled, “On Creativity” on A List Apart. As I read this article I didn’t realize that it was written almost 4 years ago, yet I found it completely relevant to today.

posted by shane about an hour ago

Want to make the world a better place? I think Ghandi said “You must be the change you want to see in the world.” Anything worth doing is worth doing together. Right?

Sometimes as creatives we lose our bearings and wonder what the point is. With so much raw awesomeness, illusion, tools, and effects all around us all the time, it’s helpful to remember a few things:

We need more story and less special effect.

We need more character and less manipulation.

We need more connection and less fortification.

We need more solutions and less technology.

We need more reality and less simulation.

We need more friends and less acquaintances.

We need more teams and less heroes.

We need more neighbors and less celebrities.

We need more face-to-face friendly speaking and less facebooking.

We need more substance and less superficiality.

We need more creativity and less critical passive-aggressiveness.

We need to exercise more faith and not be driven so much by “fear of offense” or “lack of control”.

People matter more than business, innovation, or invention.

What needs to happen will happen. What innovation is needed will occur when the time is right. When it unfolds, were we part of it? Or, when a great thing is invented, will we despise it because it was not forcibly willed by us according to our own timeline?

“To become truly great, one has to stand with people, not above them.” -Charles de Montesquieu

“Let’s fight together and make history” (1:32)

posted by bloodra on Wednesday, Aug 03, 2011 · 0 comments

I’ve only listened to the first podcast so far, but the Mormon Channel’s series on creativity seems really promising. Looking forward to the next episode on my commute!

posted by ted on Tuesday, Jun 23, 2009

“In the competitive and sometimes rather commercial world of design, the novel and startlingly different can sometimes stand out and be acclaimed purely for that reason. But being creative in design is not purely or even necessarily a matter of being original. The product designer Richard Seymour considers good design results from ‘the unexpectedly relevant solution not wackiness parading as originality.’”
Bryan Lawson, in How Designers Think.

posted by ted on Monday, May 11, 2009

The latest video on the Mormon Messages channel on YouTube is entitled “Create,” by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf. He says, “The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul…. The more you trust and rely on the Spirit, the greater your capacity to create.”

As an aside, I like the Mormon Messages idea. But I hate the fact that a YouTube implementation carries along with it the baggage of “related videos” and “promoted videos” over which viewers and video creators have no control. (That’s why I linked to the Mormon Messages profile page above, rather than to the main YouTube page that will host this specific clip permanently. Otherwise you get a bunch of random, sometimes antagonistic garbage juxtaposed with the inspiring message you intended to highlight.)

I wish YouTube would allow video creators at least a little control over the types of “related” and “promoted” videos that appear, in order to keep messages that are actually unrelated or even antithetical from diluting the message.

posted by ted on Monday, Feb 23, 2009

“Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. You [can only get there] by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you are doing. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself.”
Alan Alda

posted by davidlindes on Tuesday, Feb 10, 2009

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.”
Scott Adams, The Dilbert Principle. There’s something about this that resonates… even though I’d like to think that not all good ideas start as mistakes…

posted by ted on Saturday, Nov 29, 2008

“If it comes easy, you’re not doing it right”
Malcom Gladwell speaks on the discipline of creativity @ the 2008 AIGA Business and Design Conference. (Hint: If you don’t have the patience to watch the entire forty-minute presentation for this quote at the end, you have little hope of having a personal creative breakthrough.)

posted by sam on Wednesday, Nov 26, 2008

“We all have talents and gifts, everyone of us. The bounds of creativity extends far beyond the limits of a canvas or a sheet of paper and do not require a brush, a pen or the keys of a piano.”
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, on creativity in tonight’s General Relief Society Broadcast.

posted by tyhatch on Saturday, Sep 27, 2008

One of the secrets of going from good to great: just do it. Over and over and over.

posted by kaleb on Wednesday, Sep 24, 2008

case study

Studies on Creativity and Religion

I have spent the last several months studying creativity and the creative process as they relate to what we do here at the Church. There have been many talks given by Church leaders on creativity that serve to enlighten, inspire, and instruct. I am in the process of documenting the things I have learned and turning them into something interesting, but that is a little ways off. In the meantime, I wanted to share a few of the more thought-provoking bits of wisdom I found.

posted by rick on Friday, Aug 15, 2008

“Thus creativity involves both a process and a result. It springs out of our seeing possibilities we have not seen before, seeing connections between patches of truth and beauty, and responding to them in ways we have not done before. Feelings that lead to poetry, mental imagery that leads to painting, and pondering that gives birth to prose are but examples.

Creativity, therefore, is not simply innovation but organization. Self-discipline is required as part and parcel of that self-discovery which is paralleled by the discovery of the universes, vast and small, of which we are a part.

Gospel gladness can give us a precious perspective about all these things and can spur us on to share that beauty which our Father in Heaven helps us to create. It is a process that should not trouble itself overmuch, initially, with questions of originality and utility but, rather, with quality and excellence.”
Neal A. Maxwell, “Start Making Chips,” New Era, Sep 1998, 4

posted by rick on Thursday, Jul 10, 2008

“Specialization can easily become a strait-jacket for designers, directing their mental processes towards a predefined goal. It is thus too easy for the architect to assume that the solution to a client’s problem is a new building. Often it is not!”
Bryan Lawson in How Designers Think

posted by ted on Thursday, May 29, 2008

Offices and The Creativity Zone. Why it’s important to have office space that allows you to concentrate and get in “The Zone.”

posted by emmy on Sunday, Mar 30, 2008

Creativity: It’s Nothing New

In a recent article, Scott Berkun outlines some thoughts about innovation that have also been brought up often in recent team discussions. The bottom line of both the article and our discussions is that effective creativity (as opposed to self-expression) is not usually something 100% original, but an arrangement of existing parts or ideas in novel ways. What’s often required to solve a problem is not “original genius,” but curiosity, keen observation, and persistence.

Here are some key quotes from Scott’s excellent article :

posted by ted on Monday, Mar 17, 2008

“At the level of detail I think is necessary to make them what they are, they simply can’t pay for themselves. In purely business terms, it’s an irrational enterprise. And it’s also the best work I do.”
children’s author Sandra Boynton, on making and publishing children’s music, in the excellent piece The Power of Whimsy

posted by jason on Sunday, Feb 17, 2008

“The doodle is the perfect way to kill time when you’re bored or don’t want to pay attention. It’s quiet, non-distracting to your neighbor, and has the added benefit of making you look like you’re actively taking notes.”
Erickson Barnett, asking whether portable technology has killed the doodle

posted by ted on Thursday, Nov 08, 2007

My initials as Art.
Billed as a propaganda symbol generator, this is actually a very cool little widget for creating some nifty designs out of nothing but letters. The dials control how many instances of the characters are used, how close to the center of the symbol they appear, and how they are rotated around the center point.

This is another fine example of what Sam talked about—creativity exhibited by combining existing things in unusual combinations to come up with something new and interesting. Also reminds me a good deal of John’s Cosmic Knot . Also a good example of how Text is Beautiful (or can be), all by itself.

posted by ted on Tuesday, Sep 18, 2007

A Fine Example of Creativity

I love watching Daft Punk videos, each one is unique and intriguing. I’ve learned a lot about creativity from this Parisian duo. I came across this video of two dancers doing the Charleston (circa 1920) mixed to the audio of Around the World (circa 1997). To create something new, you can take two existing things (or ideas) and mix them into one new, creative thing.

posted by sam on Friday, Aug 31, 2007

“All of us, except my idiot cousin who still eats glue, possess everything necessary to be more creative. The problem is we’ve been trained away from our creative instincts by schools, parents, movies and workplaces.”
Scott Berkun in Creative Thinking Hacks

posted by ted on Tuesday, Aug 07, 2007