Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Left Brain - Right Brain Advertisements

Mercedes Benz advertisements - stunning!

Curioser and Curioser

Making curiosity pay. Curious?

Paul Nurse [Nobel Laureate] on Creativity

Over the course of an hour-long interview, Nobel Laureate Paul Nurse covered the nature of creativity and science, his personal creative motivation, managing creative people, as well as his unique definitions of life and DNA, the trouble with the global warming debate, and a surprisingly ironic discovery about his own origins. More links on Peter Llyod's Idea Connection blog.

Monday, March 28, 2011

IDEO's Deep Dive

This link is the second part of an ABC special on the IDEO creative process. The objective in this example is to build a better shopping cart. Here, the company demonstrates its brainstorming process they call the Deep Dive. IDEO stresses that no one may criticize during the idea generation process and that creativity is encouraged.

A Lesson in Engaged Artistry

An HBR article from my friend Fraser Buchanan of Exponential Potential.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Creativity Habit: Courage

Anthony Towler uses acting to ease his cerebral palsy and he wants others to know of its benefits.

Alan Black and TED Talks

This from my friend and colleague Dr. Alan Black This week rather than an article that I have written I am sharing a list of 12 TED Talks I am recommending that you take time each day to listen to. Other People's Ideas Impact Creativity Reading ideas, listening to ideas in speeches, discussing ideas with and by other people, whether from the ancient past, recent past, current times can influence and spark our own creativity. This week let the ideas of 12 TED Talks impact your thinking and your mind in order to spark or respark you thinking. MONDAY Amy Tan on creativity Video on Novelist Amy Tan digs deep into the creative process, looking for hints of how hers evolved. Jeff Bezos: What matters more than your talents Video on In this Princeton University graduation address, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos makes the case that our character is reflected not in the gifts we're endowed with at birth, but by the choices we make ov... TUESDAY Stefan Sagmeister: The power of time off Video on Every seven years, designer Stefan Sagmeister closes his New York studio for a yearlong sabbatical to rejuvenate and refresh their creative outlook. He explains the often overlooked value of time o... Milton Glaser on using design to make ideas new Video on From the TED archives: The legendary graphic designer Milton Glaser dives deep into a new painting inspired by Piero della Francesca. From here, he muses on what makes a convincing poster, by break... WEDNESDAY Scott McCloud on comics Video on In this unmissable look at the magic of comics, Scott McCloud bends the presentation format into a cartoon-like experience, where colorful diversions whiz through childhood fascinations and imagine... Moshe Safdie on building uniqueness Video on Looking back over his long career, architect Moshe Safdie delves into four of his design projects and explains how he labored to make each one truly unique for its site and its users. THURSDAY The Creative Spark Video channel on How are we inspired? Where might our imaginations take us? What does creativity look like in its wildest form? These clever, invigorating speakers plumb the wellspring of inventio... Tales of Invention Video channel on TED has always loved a good creation story. No matter the scale -- kitchen, continent, or solar system -- invention grants us access to the frontiers of our understanding. Legendary designer Phi... FRIDAY Tom Wujec Profile on Tom Wujec studies how we share and absorb information. He's an innovative practitioner of business visualization -- using design and technology to help groups solve problems and understand ideas. H... Derek Sivers Profile on Through his new project, MuckWork, Derek Sivers wants to lessen the burdens (and boredom) of creative people. EXTRA Elizabeth Gilbert Profile on The author of Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert has thought long and hard about some large topics. Her next fascination: genius, and how we ruin it. Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing creativity Video on Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses -- and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person "being" a genius, all of us "have" a genius. It'...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

12 Sparks for Heads-Up Creativity

Do you find your creativity at a lull and needing a jolt at times? For extra spark, gain insights from leaders and designers to jump-start your creativity. More here:

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Turning learning right side up

A Change This manifesto very close to my heart!

For too long, we have educated people for a world that no longer exists, extinguishing their creativity and instilling values antithetical to those of a free, 21st century democracy. The principal objective of education as currently provided is to ensure the maintenance and preservation of the status quo—to produce members of society who will not want to challenge any fundamental aspects of the way things are. Traditional education focuses on teaching, not learning. It incorrectly assumes that for every ounce of teaching, there is an ounce of learning by those who are taught. Being taught is, to a very large extent, boring and much of its content is seen as irrelevant. It is the teacher, not the student, who learns most in a traditional classroom.

Borrowing Brilliance

Once you understand the basic mechanics of creative thinking, the basic block and tackling skills of the thinker, you can turn your organization into a creative factory that churns out innovative concepts through intelligent collaboration and the development of a corporate culture that fosters 'corporate creativity.

The Power of Passionate Creatives

We all have passions.

Some of us have been fortunate enough to pursue our passions as our professions. Most of us have not.

But all too often those who are passionate about their work are frustrated with their employers and bosses. They are not satisfied. Far from it. They want to do more, but they feel held back.

This Change This manifesto is for them — the “passionate creatives” of the world. Together passionate creatives have more power than they realize.

But that power comes from a surprising place.

How to be creative

If you've ever felt the draw to do something creative but just haven't been able to pull it together, you'll love this manifesto from Change This.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Cultures of Innovation

While Innovation is THE corporate buzzword of the decade, there are few who understand the term as well as Steve Shapiro. Shapiro has been studying cultures of innovation for over 15 years and has written 3 books on the subject. His work includes hands on, practical guidance on how to encourage and support innovation from your team (and yourself). Its long [27 minutes] but well worth a listen.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Sense of Wonder Camp

Where bare feet and imaginations run free.

More creative education.

The reDiscover Centre

reDiscover promotes creativity in early childhood and elementary education while encouraging environmental responsibility.

reDiscover recycles everyday discards donated by business and gives them new purpose as hands-on learning materials.

reDiscover is a community art center, reuse warehouse, gallery and event space.

Check it out here:

Creative education at its best!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Are you a maverick?

This from my friend and creativity colleague Dr Robert Alan Black with his permission. His contact details follow the article. His is the most comprehensive creativity web site that I know of. Check it out.

Be a Maverick.
But I Ain't No Maverick,
Don't Want to Be,
and Besides I Would Lose My Job If I Was.

Have you ever had this conversation with another employee or internally with yourself--the good faithful employee and the rebel self who wants to fly like an eagle?

I know I did several times in the earlier years of my working life in the early 60s and since occasionally.

When I was first inspired to be more creative, thanks to Edward de Bonos book, NEW THINK I began my Walter Mitty fantasy life of being or becoming the great creative person.

Within the next couple years I began to read other similar authors and discovered there were researchers, psychologists and teachers who believed people could be taught to be more creative.

The popular books then and now about how to become more creative all seem to focus on the reader becoming or being a maverick, a risk-taking, rule- challenging, dreamer, who sacrifices everything so they can create. Walt Disney, Tom Edison, Charles Goodyear, painters, sculptors, writers, designers were always used as role models for the mavericks-in-training.

Over the past few years I have begun to challenge this approach of trying to make everybody a maverick, a top or bottom 2 or 3%- er. Using the absolute tops, the most successful, the breakthrough thinker or idea finder as role models is I believe a major reason why the work of so many, many writers, researchers, teachers, trainers and consultants has produced little change in the acceptance of creative thinking or the willingness to develop and apply the creative thinking and creativeness of the typical person, the other 94%.

Scott Adams has made a fortune writing and drawing daily, example after example of how creativity and creativeness are killed or squelched in the typical workplace. Book after book has criticized managers, bosses even leaders or blaming institutions for being killers of creativity.

Simple fact, not everyone is a Micheal Jordan, Celine Dion, Bill Gates. Not everyone possesses their natural talents, skills, drive or desire or just plain good luck. While at the same time everyone of us can be and is far more creative then we are recognized for or allowed to be the 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, 48 to 50 weeks a year, 30 to 50 years of our lives we give to our job or working. Yet watch us when we go home and see how creative we are in our hobbies, part- time jobs, volunteer work or with our families and friends.

Point 1
It is time for each of us to accept that we are more creative.

Point 2
It is time for each of us to apply our natural creativeness.

Point 3
It is time for each of us to spend some time regularly to further develop our creative thinking and problem solving skills.

Point 4
It is time for each of us to ask for more creative assignments or opportunities to be creative in our work

Point 5
It is time for each of us to ask for help and support from our fellow employees, supervisors, managers and bosses to use our creativity and further develop it at work.

For too long we have been blaming the management for not doing it for us or for doing it to us.

Do our fellow employees, supervisors, managers and bosses reject our ideas kill our ideas (deliberately or indirectly) refuse our ideas tell us to stick to the plan

Do the job you are paid for - stay in line

No doubt this happens.

You and I do it with our spouses, children, neighbors, friends and total strangers every day. It is natural for the greatest majority of people to prefer the status quo, the as we have always done it syndrome.

To be more creative we simply need to step out of line, get out of the box, draw outside of the lines. Yet when we do these we tend to expect things to change for the better instantaneously. We want everyone else to change. Yet we resist change. Actually we tend to resist being changed by other people, outside influences, systems, situations, bad or good luck.

That is another of the major problems with increasing the amount of creativity used in our daily lives. We expect others to change to our solutions and change instantly. Too often our ideas are simply that. Ideas. They aren't solutions. They are ideas, thoughts, suggestions, opinions. They are NOT worked out ready to be applied solutions.

Therefore others who don't see, feel, smell, taste, touch, sense the same way we do resist our ideas.

What can you and I begin to do? choose to work at being more creative
choose to accept that we can improve and expand our creative abilities.
work at taking our ideas to solution more and experiment with them before we expect others to immediately accept them.

work more at doing small things more creatively

stop trying to become a MAVERICK or a GIANT and focus on becoming a more creative YOU

ask in less threatening ways for help and support in being creative

ask in less threatening ways for opportunities to work on more creative work.

work on your current job more creatively

accept that you fantasize about being a giant, a maverick, a hero/heroine,
breakthrough thinker and work at becoming a stronger, better, more creative you.

Who knows!

By doing these for 1 days, a year, 5 years you will become the next MAVERICK that we write about for others to use as a role model.

To be more creative simply choose to be. Then be. Then support everyone else in being.

Very few of us will change the world. Yet we all can change ourselves.

The funny thing is when we do that the world somehow changes too.

©2008 Robert Alan Black, Ph.D. RAB, Inc. -
Cre8ng People, Places & Possibilities
P.O. Box 5805 Athens, Georgia 30604-5805


Learning to Change

The future for schools?

The Creative Personality

This article by Scott Barry Kaufman in the Huffington Post explores the nature of the creative personality.
Creativity researchers have long-ago accepted the fact that creative people are complex. Almost by definition, creativity is complex. Creative thinking is influenced by many traits, behaviors, and sociocultural factors that come together in one person. It would be surprising if all of these factors didn't sometimes, or even most of the time, appear to contradict one another.
More here:

Fostering a Creative Environment

Featuring Thinkubator founder Gerald Haman - an old clip but still very relevant.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Use art to turn the world upside down.

JR, a semi-anonymous French street artist, uses his camera to show the world its true face, by pasting photos of the human face across massive canvases. At TED2011, he makes his audacious TED Prize wish: to use art to turn the world inside out. Learn more about his work and learn how you can join in at

Friday, March 4, 2011

We can all be creative

John Eger suggests that we can all be creative. This is something that lots of us have know for a long time. Still I guess its nice to have it reinforced. Go here to read his article in the Huffington Post.

Danny Boyle on Inspiration

Have a look at this video clip on David Parrish's blog.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

You can draw

"Begin with a proper sketch book. Draw in ink. Finish each drawing you begin, and keep every drawing you finish. No erasing, no ripping out a page, no covering a page with angry scribbles. What you draw is an invaluable and unique representation of how you saw at that moment in that place according to your abilities. That's all we want. We already know what a dog really looks like." More here: