Dixie Darr

In creativity on January 8, 2007 at 8:48 am

Happy Birthday to Me

Creative Rule of Thumb #1

“The best way to get great ideas is to get lots of ideas and throw the bad ones away.” Charles “Chic” Thompson

Laugh more. That’s one of my resolutions this year, so I was thrilled to receive a very funny email birthday card from my friend, Maureen this morning. It let me start the day by laughing out loud for almost a full minute. I still laugh when I think about it. In fact, I liked it so much that I am thinking about signing up for a joke-a-day email.

Laughter is important for stress-reduction and joie de vivre, but it is also a necessary component for creativity, one of my primary areas of exploration for thirty years. I just ran across a list of five levels of creativity from A. Taylor in a classic book, The Nature of Creative Process.

Level 1: Primitive and intuitive expression found in children and in adults who have not been trained in art.

Level 2: Academic and technical level where the artist learns skills and techniques to master the craft.

Level 3: Invention involves experimenting with the craft, breaking rules and challenging the boundaries of academic tradition and becoming increasingly adventurous and experimental.

Level 4: Innovation requires that the artist become more original, using materials and methods that are out of the ordinary.

Level 5: At the genius level are individuals whose ideas and accomplishments defy explanation. This may be the only level that cannot be learned.

Whatever your field, you can probably benefit from increasing your creativity, moving from, say, level 2 to level 3 or level 3 to level 4. Laughter is a good place to start.

©2006 Dixie Darr. All rights reserved

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