How to be Creative

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My previous post was all about the benefits of creativity and how anyone can be creative. This time I thought I’d continue the theme by listing some easy and enjoyable ways to be creative. Remember: asking questions, generating ideas, working on and developing ideas can all be as creative as seeing an idea through to the end of a completed project.

You might also like to vary just how individual and different you want to be: following a written recipe can create a beautiful meal, even though working on your own idea for using a particular set of ingredients may be more original. Both are creative. Explore books, magazines and the internet for ideas, because the possibilities are endless.

pottery

Here are a few suggestions to introduce more creativity into your life:

Buy a colouring book for adults and enjoy colouring some of the pictures – just as you did when you were a child.
• If you have children, play creatively with them. Encourage dressing up and “Let’s pretend” games which you take part in yourself. Develop your acting talents as a wicked witch or kind-hearted king, according to requirements!
• Cook from scratch using fresh ingredients. Follow a recipe you haven’t tried before or make your own version of something you usually buy ready-made. Experiment with altering one or two ingredients in the published recipe. Next try your own new idea with a few things you find in the fridge. Find unusual ways to present and serve your dishes.
• Learn a new craft which can help you make clothes – or revive a skill you’ve neglected. Try sewing, knitting or crochet. There are plenty of free patterns and ideas on the internet. Then you can try adapting them or making your own patterns. Maybe you have garments or other items you can alter for new purposes. Or you could focus on a special type of needlework such as embroidery, tapestry or quilting.

Take up drawing, practising different types of sketching and different subject matters. Experiment with lines and pattern– you can be abstract as well as realistic. Try different types of pencil, charcoal and ink.
• Use paints – oil, acrylic or water colour to paint on paper. Experiment with different approaches. Look at what other artists too and see how they can inspire you.
• Explore a craft which uses scrap materials, such as papier mache or collage.
• Take up card-making or scrap-booking. Collect different types of paper and materials which will be useful and can be adapted to different themes or cards for different occasions and people.

Look at a room in your home with new eyes to see how you could give it a completely fresh appearance. What difference will it make if you move or change some furniture round? What effects could you create by using different coloured paint or designs of wallpaper? What might you buy or make to add interest to the room?
• Try restoring or upcycling furniture, using new paints, varnishes or trimmings. Perhaps learn a new technique such as decoupage, marquetry or mosaics to enhance your creations.
• Take up playing a musical instrument, or rediscover a neglected skill. Try playing different types of music or even composing your own.
• Join an amateur dramatic group or a choir.

Pay more attention to your garden, designing some new flower beds or vegetable plots. Then get creative with what you grow: flower arranging or cooking vegetable dishes. If you don’t have a garden, consider renting an allotment from the council for as little as 50p a week in some authorities.
• Take up jewellery-making. Beads are easiest, but there are plenty of other materials and techniques which can be used to create beautiful items.
• Make candles- a range of shapes, styles, sizes and scents is available.
• Take up writing for pleasure. Maybe you can start small but dream big! Here are some ideas: short stories; novels for adults or children; poetry; songs; articles of all types and on all subjects for magazines, websites or newspapers; letters to newspapers; autobiography; a joke book, blogging; cartoon strips; recipes.

Create a website or blog, designing its lay-out and content yourself.
• Develop your photographic skills, perhaps specialising in a particular type of shot. Find appealing ways to present your work- for instance, either online or in albums.
• Take up film-making. There are all kinds of approaches possible. For instance, producing something humorous with a few friends or making an information film for a local feature or charity.
• Consider joining an adult class, perhaps to take up one of the activities we’ve already mentioned. There are plenty of others on offer too. For instance, you could find classes in: woodturning, sculpture, pottery, quilling, quilting, weaving, basket-making, polymer clay, silversmithing, enamelling, pewterwork, glass painting, silk painting, felting, pressing flowers, batik, cake-decorating, carving.

Remember, start with small projects just for yourself – and you may be perfectly happy just to keep your creativity for you alone. But don’t be surprised if in time you broaden your scope and it leads to larger projects!

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