I was reading a bunch of stuff online in search of something inspiring. Instead, I ended up looking into several ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ pages on websites. This gave me a thought. Why not explore some of the most asked questions about creativity, and hopefully provide answers? I asked a number of people to tell me what they would like to know about creativity. These were a mix of people from my phonebook, email contacts, some Facebook friends, and random Twitter followers. I stumbled over many interesting ones, but I especially chose the few which, when answered, will be able to inspire. See if you have asked yourself any of these.
“Is there such a thing as being too young to showcase one’s creativity?”
No, there isn’t. In fact, there isn’t such a thing as too old either. When you have painted, written, choreographed, or invented something new, the first thing people would want to know is why and how you did it. They don’t always ask about your age. Well, maybe if you’ve become incredibly famous overnight, they would want to know more about your background eventually. But how old (or young) you are is not much of a concern in the world of creativity. If anything, being either too young or too old and still capable of doing something amazing is a plus factor.
“Can I label a style or manner of creating as my own even when it’s inspired by another artist?”
Of course. And you should. My co-author on this blog wrote about matters of originality in one of the older posts titled ‘It’s A Steal! (Or, Creativity Through Copying)‘, just so you’d get a more thorough explanation. Personally, I think we have a right to call a reproduction of another artist’s work as our own for the mere fact that our copy is a product of our efforts. I understand that the question is about the style or the manner of creating. If that is the case, it is a revision rather than a replication. So yes, you may call it your own.
“What is the importance of consistency in the quality of your work?”
First of all, an artist should never risk the quality of his or her work for whatever reason. It’s important to be consistent in quality, but in instances where there is a deadline to be met, you must free yourself from any distraction and manage your time well. Consistently in quality is a must, but not to be confused with consistency of the work entirely. Creativity, after all, is all about innovation and trying new things. If you stick to what you know or stick with how you are used to doing things, you will never know how much further your creativity can go. It’s best to widen the range of your skills.
“When can you say that you have reached the peak of your career in creativity?”
When I read this question, I ended up asking another question. Does a career in creativity reach a peak at all? Not everyone with a career is using his or her creativity, and not everyone who is creative is making a career out of it. If you have made your creativity a career, a peak would mean an end, but only if you stop trying to outdo the best that you’ve done. Don’t look at creativity as a career. Instead, look at it as a lifelong commitment. It reaches a peak, but it will only be one point among the many highs and lows of such commitment.
“How can I make a profit out of my creativity?”
Actually, this should be the last thing you should think about. This question tends to have a negative effect on your creativity because instead of focusing on the true value of your work, it lets your mind wander off to a danger zone where monetary profit may eclipse your initial motive to create. I suggest that you think of ways on how you can maximize your skills by always looking for inspiration, so that you keep creating interesting things. When the mass production is ongoing, that is the best time to think of how you can sell your work.