News


How the business world hijacked the word ‘creative’

Sheila Chandra - Monday, August 14, 2017

The business world uses the word ‘creative’ a lot

 Just perusing all those titles in the soft business section of the bookshop with the word ‘creativity’ in the title you’d think businesses were incredibly creative places. In artistic terms, this just isn’t true. When businesses ask for ‘creativity’ from their employees, they typically mean that they want focused and pioneering methods of improving their profits. They simply want their employees to bring their brains to work.

 

 The business world doesn’t really understand what creativity is….

This is not creativity. It takes a little creative thinking – but it doesn’t remotely resemble the creative process that fine artists pursue all day. Artists who are confident in their creative processes understand that while creativity can sometimes be directed, an artist’s most important and most creative ‘leaps’ are made when the artist lets the creativity itself lead. It’s a highly intuitive and emotional process – and although people may be delighted with the results, they’re not usually predictable.Nor are they necessarily profit orientated.

 

Creativity given free-reign is essential

Of course most artists can create to order if necessary – and we frequently do. But commissions – whatever form they take – are not usually our best work, nor are they the thing that move our work forward. Innovation may be a process you can steer in science, but not in art. That’s because what people want, is art that defies expectation. And so to aim for an expectation defeats the point.

 

Nurturing ‘free range’ creativity is hard

When you can’t guarantee a profitable result, sticking with a free range, unfettered creative process is hard. The work itself is hard because it’s full of uncertainty, and supporting yourself to do it, instead of churning out a pot boiler, is hard too. Some artists are simply not in a position where they can. Others lack the huge confidence to be vulnerable that it takes, or choose not to. And yet, it’s the only thing that’s going to take your work from ‘good’ to ‘great’. Although business people may be delighted eventually – in say, 20 years’ time when you’ve sold shedloads of product – chances are, right now, they’re unlikely to champion you to do it. Real creativity is always a risk.

 

 Business and social media have devalued the word ‘creative’

These days, any activity that takes even the slightest bit of independent thought – like creating a slightly different sandwich filling – is hailed by business as being ‘creative’. And social media means that people who aren’t remotely serious about being creators can claim that virtually any activity they engage in is ‘creative’, because it’s such a buzzword and they’re in charge of the hashtags they attach to it. Ironically, both of these categories of people are rendering the word meaningless.

This is not creativity. Not in the best sense. Nor is re-jigging the way resources are channeled through your company so that you pay less tax. That’s just being good at your job. And the two should not be synonyms. No, being creative is dedicating yourself to creating new work, new forms of work and new genres. Surprising, delighting and transporting your audience. It’s a rare sandwich filling that will do that. But it’s what great artists do all the time. And that’s what creativity really is.

 

We need a creativity revolution

In the meantime, I wish the public realised the difference. It’s time to take the word ‘creative’ back! We need a creativity revolution in this country, just like the food revolution we had about a decade ago, when people started caring about quality and provenance. It would result in a proper appreciation of the risks creative people take. And maybe then, the public will be willing to pay a decent price for our work and stop resenting us for being ‘privileged’ enough risk everything to be able to make it.

 


Comments
Post has no comments.
Post a Comment




Captcha Image


×

Recent Posts


Tags

too many commitments clearing clutter letting go 2018 goals creative organising subconscious mind procrastination email bankruptcy focus clearing as you go boredom home care just in case staying in control resentment creative culture clearing bulk buy nurturing creative work clarity of thought quality successful artist lazy cleaning absences vulnerability low maintenance buy fewer clothes how to work efficiently sacrifice multiple lifetimes long-term artistic development missed opportunities card professional encouragement slim-line wardrobe funding inconvenience artists well curated closet criteria for letting go of stuff great artists organise new year feeling creative buying wealth : clothes social media creative ambitions artist mentoring working class artists jealousy arrogance Sheila Chandra author vocation proposal writing mess being organized creative spark home organising professional mentors green room compulsion artist feel like creatiing professional creative career clutter addict normality peacefulness buying happiness home life creativity pop music celebrity endorsed products networking wind down branding morning routines precious memories diagnosis stay tidy automatically partners control platform organizing for creative people stop hoarding stuff clutter stardust creative people friendships workspaces hobbies social media networking loving your audience ‘creativity’ too busy goals creative wellbeing magic how to be naturally tidy symptoms of creativity tortoise and hare emotional resilience car friends emotionally secure artist binge buying stardust options business interface to creative businesses tidy desk business-like much better friend VIPs being tripped up getting ready for work creative confidence to do list temperament productivity tidy people artist mentors confident in clothes under-confidence well organized hotel room myth fine art time clutter stay on top of email wardrobe clearing in short bursts career strategy trope touring domestic life artist workspaces creative career coaching the void culture emotional balance emotional support low maintenance strategies work efficiently diary innocence anxiety living mess free streamlining routines brilliant creator clear desk business clear outs work/home life balance networking effectively creative commissions parent working class culture buying youth inspiration appointments exhaustion overwork fall of innocence nurture creativity critical acclaim creative person hostile clutter efficient work patterns good friend creative career static spaces good creative habits cry spree good art work work trips chaotic creative magic guilty purchases network display items artistic conviction mature artists buying hope childhood visualising minimalists living clutter free email theft concentrated creative time tension lifetimes motivation cleaning your desk disorganization artist goals collections smart artists introverts popular culture effortlessly tidy cupboard of shame brands how to save time artistry work priorities work life great art artistic chaos clean desk peer-to-peer networks double standard sheila chandra coaching artist materials elevator pitch pop culture writing funding campaigns grief mornings housework much quicker business-speak slow and steady creative identity self promotion stop cluttering loss copyright nascent artists ‘stories’ about your possessions why organise tidy crowdfunding creativity diary hijacking creativity email overload tidiness in living spaces tips for clearing nipping things in the bud making decisions organisation tidier hoarding proposals imagination warm down saving time dynamic spaces commitment storage

Archive

    ×