Creativity Outlets for All Levels: The Creativity Continuum
Creating Confidently believes that creativity is a resource accessible to everyone. It is an innate part of who we are as the human race. We all seek to express ourselves in order to connect and belong to a community, for relationships with others, and communicate ideas. Whether you have a creative calling or think creativity isn’t for you, I’ve compiled a list of creative outlets for all levels of creatives, to give us a start or a change on our creative journey.
Creativity exists on a spectrum from artistry to ingenuity. At its heart creativity is all about self expression, and the vehicle we choose to use to communicate that self expression is where creativity comes into play. Both self expression and communication are integral to the creative process, for more insight into my FIVE FUNDAMENTALS OF CREATIVITY check out last week’s blog post. The spectrum theory is how I explain creativity to people who don’t believe they are creative because they don’t partake in the traditional arts. This is a travesty that we have created as a general society and a creative collective. The imbalance that exists between creatives and “non-creative” people is absurd. To live is to be creative. It has also created this paradox valuing creativity as an elevated art and yet brushing it off as fluff work, while also polarizing the opposing end of the spectrum to be completely utilitarian and therefore not creative but maths can have imaginary numbers. If you can call something imaginary there is a saturation of creativity happening at that point in time and space.
Artistry - visual arts - dance - music - sculpture - pottery - carpentry - workouts - business - marketing - entrepreneurship - invention - science - math - communication - problem solving - ingenuity
Historically, the Artistic side of the creativity continuum has been celebrated and undermined in equal measure, but always in the name of the creatives, the chaos, the mess. Meanwhile those who had an aptitude for logic, science, maths, were hailed as genius, focused, structured. Further separation occurred with the businessman, the peddler, the fencer - known for their ingenuity, resourcefulness and entrepreneurship. However, it is curiosity that drives scientific discovery, logic that writes narrative, and a mess of all of the above to create a business that works. All require adaptability. All express ideas and opinions. All communicate to others who you are and what you see. Therefore, all of the above and more, are creative endeavours.
Creativity does not equate to art alone. Creativity does not equate to mess and chaos alone. There is space for logic and structure in the creative process. One might even argue that forming a creative practice requires structure to be present, even in a loose form. Our daily lives are full of creative choices. The problem is we’ve been conditioned to see creativity as only one thing - art. So, this is for anyone out there who’s found this blog, or knows someone who needs to see this post and affirmed in their creative power. You are creative. It doesn’t have to be your identity and you don’t have to like art. You are creative when you decide what to wear each morning. You are creative when you choose your words in a conversation with another person. You are creative when you solve for x or y or how to get from point A to point B on time.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, and some suggestions may be an umbrella encapsulating several specific crafts or ideas. All of this to say, it’s a simple guide to push your creative boundaries and get you thinking about creativity in a new way or, at the very least, find some new outlets that may be calling your name.
List Making - The first creative act in this exercise is choosing something to make a list of. Then follows the listing of related items. This is one exercise that can be both functional and purposeful and yet also be fun and imaginative.
Embroidery - Whether you follow patterns or freestyle, embroider a patch to fix clothing or make a pillow pretty, this is another exercise of creativity that can perform both beautiful form and purposeful function.
Writing in any capacity - This is an umbrella term. From journaling to fiction, non fiction to letters, poetry to training guides, writing is one of the ultimate forms of expression and communication.
Moving your body in any capacity - Another umbrella topic - working out, dancing, walking in nature, stretching, making with your hands, all of these are forms of expression and connection with your body.
Trying a new recipe /Baking or cooking anything - Where once there was a collection of items, there is now something new. Creating anything from pieces of something else is creativity!
Karaoke - Connecting with your emotions, having fun, and expressing your inner feelings are all rooted in creative practice. It also brings a community of people together to share in an experience.
Getting dressed - Choosing how to present yourself day to day is a creative effort. Whether you design your own clothes, thrift different pieces or choose from your closet based on how you feel that day, creating and expressing yourself through your wardrobe is a basic creative choice we make every single day.
Spring Cleaning - You know that once you start a deep decluttering clean, you will play with whatever you find. Put on a set of your favourite tunes and reinvent your space the way you want to live.
Home Decor/DIY - Creating your aesthetic, making things that way you want them - that is a creative effort close to crafting. Just because it may be pretty, doesn’t mean it can’t also be functional. Creativity isn’t confirmed to one or the other.
Sustainability Practices - A big issue in our world today is sustainability. In a world of convenience, moving to more labour intensive sustainability practices can be a difficult pill to swallow. From making your own laundry detergent and dryer sheets, upcycling old cloth for new purposes, and a plethora of other initiatives are stellar examples of purposeful creative choice.
Play Games - imaginary, board or video - Engaging in play is a key part of creativity. Allowing ourselves to get back to curiosity, delight and play is a catalyst for creative inspiration. Try venturing outside of your comfort games and try something new.
Crossword puzzles and other brain teasers - Keeping an agile brain, forcing those neural networks to activate and work in new ways, from new connections opens the door wider to creativity. Solving puzzles expands to solving problems. Being able to think about a situation from different angles, developing adaptability and sharpening perceptions is essential to cultivating a creative life.