The Two Facets of Creativity.

Published in: Life.

Creativity is often erroneously thought of as a trait that you either born with or without. We are all born creative, but we lose it over time as we are taught to embrace reality.1 While some may be more naturally predisposed to creativity, we are all capable and we can work to cultivate it.

Specifically, there are two parts to creativity: vision and technical ability. Vision is the initial idea, the concept; technical ability is the translation of idea to expression.2 Without vision, the result is meaningless; without technical ability, thoughts remain unspoken.

Fortunately, both can be practiced and developed.

Think intentionally about these distinctions of creativity and plan exercises that practice them. Vision can be developed by brainstorming, browsing others’ work for inspiration, and purposeful thinking outside of the box. Technical ability can be developed by exercises specific to your medium,3 copying challenging portions of others’ work, as well as classes involving your medium.

How do you develop your vision and technical abilities?

  1. Look to children and the imagination they express, and then look to how education and adults teach that imagination and its expression are either lower priorities or wastes altogether. Creativity is destroyed in the name of maturity.
  2. Technical ability is what most people mean when they speak of creativity, but vision is equally important.
  3. Your medium is your means of expression: drawing, painting, graphic design, writing, speaking, anything.

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