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Defining Creativity

The Oxford English Dictionary suggests:
The Oxford English Dictionary suggests: "The ability to create". Fantastic! The Heritage Illustrated Dictionary is a little more helpful: "Characterized by originality and expressiveness, imaginative". So we can start to see some of the characteristics of creativity.

Here are some much more interesting quotes:

"Every act of creation is first of all an act of destruction". Picasso

My interpretation of this quote is the need to break down our barriers to creativity: preconceptions, fears, being trapped by 'rules' and unwilling to be frivolous, foolish and play with ideas that may take us to a solution.

"Imagination is more important than knowledge." Einstein

This quote suggests some of the 'ingredients': imaginative thinking is most important (in Einstein's view!) but there is a need for knowledge too.

And we came across this great quote:

"Creativity is knowledge times imagination times evaluation. And I say 'times' because if either knowledge, imagination or evaluation is missing then there would be no creativity." David C. Morrison

This really works well, because it suggests that creativity, and being creative, is a kind of process:

'First, you have to be knowledgeable on the subject. Fill yourself with understanding. 'Second, use imaginative or creative thinking to generate ideas 'Third, and finally, take time to evaluate

We have more information on brainstorming, in our 'Creative Thinking' section that provides one approach to undertaking this creative process.

And finally, a further quote from David C. Morrison:

"Also looking on to what innovation is, innovation is knowledge times imagination times evaluation times action. Because my belief is without action there is no innovation or no applied creativity."

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