Creativity in Business, in Life


Creativity keeps thinking fresh; keeps the mind open to possibilities; brings together connections in a disparate world.

This page pays homage to Twyla Tharp whose book, The Creative Habit. Below are excerpts from her book (with comments added):

News Flash:  Transforming your ideas into reality rarely goes according to plan

The most productive artists I know have a plan in mind when they get down to work. They know what they want to accomplish, how to do it, and what to do if the process falls off track. But there's a fine line between good planning and over planning. You never want the planning to inhibit the natural evolution of your work.
A plan is like scaffolding around a building. When you're putting up the exterior shell, the scaffolding is vital. But once the shell is in place and you start working the interior, the scaffolding disappears. That's how I think of planning. It has to be sufficiently thoughtful and solid to get the work up and standing straight, but it cannot take over as you toil away on the interior guts of a piece. Transforming your ideas rarely goes according to plan. [Does this define entrepreneurship, or what? Entrepreneurship is creativity at work.]

This is the most interesting paradox of creativity:  In order to be habitually creative, you have to know how to prepare to be creative, but good planning alone won't make your efforts successful:  it's only after you let go of your plans that you can breathe life into your efforts.



Luck is a Skill

Creative endeavors can never be thoroughly mapped out ahead of time. You have to allow for the suddenly altered landscape, the change in plans, the accidental spark – and you have to see it as a stroke of luck rather than a disturbance of your perfect scheme. Habitually creative people are, in E.B. White's words, “prepared to be lucky.”
The key words are “prepared” and “lucky.” They're inseparable. You don't get lucky without preparation, and there's no sense in being prepared it you're not open to the possibility of a glorious accident.
Some people resent the idea of luck. Accepting the role of chance in our lives suggests that our creations and triumphs are not entirely our own, and that in some way we're undeserving of our success. I say, Get Over It. This is how the world works. In creative endeavors, luck is a skill.

“The more I practice, the luckier I get.” – Gary Player, legendary golfer

Commentary: How do Business Plans and Marketing Communication Strategies fit into this discussion?

 It used to be that to get a loan or investor to start a business, the Business Plan had to be written in stone. Even when it became evident that the original idea wasn't working as envisioned, the investor stubbornly stuck to The Plan, unable to acknowledge that a different market niche was clearly the better choice. The fledgling business died. After decades of entrepreneurship, the Kauffman Foundation has discovered that traditional Business Plans are now being thought of as a starting point, with the understanding and expectation that it will likely be adjusted, as more information becomes available during the process. 
Similarly, Marketing Communications strategies map out the framework, set the parameters, ensure that every one is in agreement on which direction to head. Marketing Plans and Communications Plans are obviously based on the strategy, but they are the nuts and bolts of how to put the strategy into actionable steps. At any point in the process we, as creative business persons, should be open to be prepared for LUCK, and be prepared to recognize it. “Being prepared for luck is like a voice message that tells you, ‘Something good may happen to you today between 9am and 5pm.'” Make sure you're ready to see it.

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Future Topics

Other upcoming content includes textile design following WWII. Breakout graphic designs and first-ever palettes ensued, on into the 1950s. Did you know that architect Frank Lloyd Wright and sculptor Henri Moore designed textiles at that time?