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Inspiration Prompt #26 – What Is Creativity

November 17th, 2008 by Avital

Creative Commons Creativity Poster [Creative Commons Creativity Poster by maven, on Flickr]

There are almost as many definition of creativity as there are people trying to define it. In my opinion this happens because each and every person has a different take on creativity. You might already have established your idea of what is creativity and how it resides within you and others or you might still try to figure it out.

For this week’s inspiration prompt I have compiled a list of different definitions of ‘Creativity’:

  • Merriam-Webster dictionary:
    “1 : the quality of being creative
    2 : the ability to create”
  • Concise Oxford English Dictionary: “relating to or involving the use of imagination or original ideas in order to create something”.
  • Wikipedia: “Creativity is a mental and social process involving the generation of new ideas or concepts, or new associations of the creative mind between existing ideas or concepts. An alternative conception of creativity is that it is simply the act of making something new.”
  • Encyclopædia Britannica: “Ability to produce something new through imaginative skill, whether a new solution to a problem, a new method or device, or a new artistic object or form”.
  • Answers.com: “Creativity is the ability to think up and design new inventions, produce works of art, solve problems in new ways, or develop an idea based on an original, novel, or unconventional approach.”
  • Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi: Csikszentmihalyi finds correlation between creativity, happiness and being in a state of ‘flow‘. He suggests that the creative moment occurs when a person is completely involved in an activity. The flow state, as he defines it, is an optimal state of intrinsic motivation, where the person is fully immersed in what he or she is doing.
  • Mary Lou Cook: “Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun”.

As I see it creativity is Unleashing the child within and going back to the state of freedom of thinking and experimenting that we naturally had when we were children. Therefore, in my opinion, as each child is different from another, so is each person’s expression of creativity.

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What is your definition of creativity? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.

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4 Comments to “Inspiration Prompt #26 – What Is Creativity”

  1. I understand the creativity in the relation of ideas to create new concepts. To create or to broke the rules, first we have to understand the rules.

  2. Natural says:

    this is a difficult thing to explain, but creativity, to me, is being able to make or create something out of nothing. using your mind’s eye to see beyond the obvious.

    having an imagination to see something else.

    • Avital says:

      I love your definition, saying: “using your mind’s eye to see beyond the obvious.” It’s interesting and has made me think about it…Seeing beyond the obvious is taken for granted…

  3. Colleen says:

    I don’t know about the “child within”. I never knew what to do as a child. I didn’t like random-ness and didn’t have the skills to produce projects that pleased me. I am much more able to express my ideas and experiment with techniques as an adult than I ever was as a child. That said, I love being able to create and have experimented and practiced for years just to experience that self-satisfaction!