August 18, 2020 / Source: The Bizz USA
By Isabelle Sitchon; Edited by Pallavi Vemuri and Haarika Kalahasti
The clock reads 1 A.M. as your desk light illuminates the white pages of your bullet journal. For the nineteenth time, black ink smears all over the surface of the paper, staining the edges of your meticulously drawn out calendar. As the heaviness in your eyes increases tenfold, you begin to think, “being creative must not be my thing.” In reality, creativity is rooted in all of us. Our creative streak may not be in the form of “Louvre-worthy” paintings or Grammy-winning songs. Some may be more accustomed to taking and editing photos or even designing stickers. “Why haven’t I gotten creative yet?”, you may ask. The reason? It’s because you haven’t tapped into your innovative drive yet.
Let Your Thoughts Consume You
We all have fantasies or ideas in our heads-- the little “what if’s” that conspire in your thoughts. They’re sporadic and out of the blue; you might be typing away on your essay one minute, and then scribbling out the idea of an apocalyptic sci-fi movie on paper the next. However, most of us will hear these thoughts in our head and instead ignore them or push them away.
Don’t be afraid to delve into your imagination! Those dreams that we envision in our heads could be the start of a bigger project. For example, that stick figure doodle you drew in the corner of your algebra exam could become the main character of a mystery comic series. Famous artists such as Piccasso and Shakesphere formed their masterpieces from their imagination. Your imagination is part of who you are--the main building block towards your creative desire.
Developing Your Ideas
Unfortunately, relying on your imagination alone will not be enough to drive your creative impulse. Your creativity may happen in the spur of the moment. At those times, you need to take those ideas and put them to work! There’s no other way of telling it; don’t hesitate and procrastinate! When you start to come up with the craziest thoughts, start jotting them down. Many writers and artists carry a pocket journal to document their ideas, since inspiration can strike at the most random of times. It’s an easy tip you can integrate into your life as well! Giving a physical form to your ideas enforces you to keep thinking about it, making it easier for you to get started on making your dreams a reality.
Building on the Basics
Although you may never know when your spirit of invention may kick in, knowing basic skills and fundamentals are essential in guiding you along your creative journey. You can’t knit a blanket when you don’t have the slightest idea how to knit. Filming a music video is nearly impossible without a camera and some videography knowledge. That being said, don’t let your artistic drive be discouraged by the skill level it takes to put your ideas into action. You don’t need to star in “The Great American Baking Show” to experiment with baking cookies or tarts. All you need is your brain, your hands, and some background knowledge! Forcing yourself to be this creative genius that you aspire to be can backfire easily. You might feel more pressured to make the best use of your creativity, which can trigger a cycle of stress and procrastination in hopes of avoiding failure. Our skills improve as we follow our creative passions. If you’re feeling in a bit of a rut, surround yourself with a variety of sources that inspire you!
Don’t Give Up!
Picture this: you’ve made significant progress in your short novel and even sent the first draft for review to beta readers across the country. You feel so accomplished, but all of that comes crashing down when merely one beta review arrives back in your mailbox after a month. Not to mention, you had just posted a snippet of your story onto your blog, only for it to be riddled with negative criticism. At this point, you might be doubting your writing abilities, asking, “What was all of this for?” or “Did I not do enough?”
Of course, not every craft of yours will be successful. There will be times when you may feel the need to toss all your watercolor paintings into the trash. I say to you: keep going. Feel confident that with practice and determination, your work will turn out amazing! If it doesn’t, bear in mind that you pursued a creative endeavor of yours. You dove deep into your imagination and made your ideas real. That’s something to be proud of!
“We all have brain-halves, or however we split the brain to decide where you’re going to be dominated and where you’re not.” said Neil Degrasse Tyson, “Develop it all, and watch what happens.”