I was out the other night and was talking to Matt Searles about art and creativity. It occurred to me that there are three types of creative thinking (at least that I’ve been able to identify.
The first is the creativity of ideation. This is thinking long and hard about what is behind expression. It’s wondering why an idea needs to be expressed and the rational for expressing it. This is critical thinking. Matt does it in spades.
The second is the creativity of narration. This is imaging a story and how it will look when it is told. It is entertainment and might not involve any deep ideas at all. This is how I think creatively.
The third is the creativity of production. This is grappling with the mechanics of creating. It is thinking about how to allow expression to occur and to solve problems. My brother-in-law James is like this.
Let me tell you a story about the three of us that illustrates what I am talking about. A few months ago James told me about a contest. The goal was to product a short video that would celebrate the 25th (I think) anniversary of the Lego minifig.
I sat around and thought about it for a while and had an idea. It was almost finished in my mind as I imagined it. I loved the story I’d come up with. But I recognized I wouldn’t be able to tell the story on my own.
First I would need someone who was familiar with the technology – and I thought of Matt since I know the kinds of things he does. I’d also need someone to help come up with a way to make a life-size minifig and thought of James. I got in touch with them and we all agreed to work together.
We met at my house to plan. I launched into telling the story. Right away, Matt started asking what I was trying to express, what might be behind the story. I, of course, had no idea. To me it was a nice story. While Matt and I were going back and forth, James, in the meantime had made a short stop-action movie on his own.
I have more thinking to do on this. I need to reconnect with Matt to discuss it a bit more. There are more details that I need to sort out but I think this makes sense. Are there other kinds of creative thinking that I am ignoring? Let me know.
[tags]creativity, thinking, gregpc, Matt Searles, ideas, entertainment, production[/tags]