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Author Topic: Another View on Creativity  (Read 3091 times)

Rob C

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Another View on Creativity
« on: September 18, 2015, 02:12:58 PM »

petermfiore

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2015, 03:58:36 PM »

« Last Edit: October 18, 2015, 10:22:55 AM by petermfiore »
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Eric Myrvaagnes

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2015, 04:46:26 PM »

Yes, a fine essay. Thanks for the link, Rob.
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GrahamBy

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2015, 05:25:01 AM »

Creation is the birth of something, and something cannot come from nothing
-Lindbergh

Nothing will come of nothing. Speak again.
-Lear

They are interesting thoughts, but there is also the communication side (as Cordelia found to her detriment... and her dad's).
Being able to distill my experiences of the world into a visual image is interesting to me, but in order for my personal creativity to speak to other people, there needs to be some commonality between my experience of the world and that of the people looking at my work. Moreover, there needs to be some sophistication: if I make an image or write a novel that expresses banalities, it's not going to bring anything new to the conversation with the viewer or reader... and there is typically going to be an inverse relationship between the sophistication, or specificity of that conversation, and the number of people who will relate to it. At one extreme we have a pretty, colourful sunset; at the other photos of my child.

The real trick, it seems to me, is finding something that communicates with a large audience without being trite. Which may be one reason why photos of beautiful people with little or no clothing are such a good subject  ;D

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seosp4

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2016, 04:02:55 AM »

obviously it is nice but if you take to the real outside environment, I think will be great
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Isaac

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2016, 02:14:41 PM »

Being able to distill my experiences of the world into a visual image is interesting to me, but in order for my personal creativity to speak to other people, there needs to be some commonality between my experience of the world and that of the people looking at my work.


Similarly --

Quote
... it is a story that IF YOU WISH and IF YOU CAN SEE THE STORY you can universalize and then offer to people as a mirror of themselves. Your photographs are still mirrors of yourself. In other words your images are raw, the emotions naked. To present these to others they need appropriate clothes. These are private images not public ones. They are "expressive" meaning a direct mirror of yourself rather than "creative" meaning so converted as to affect others as mirrors of themselves.

page 18 Minor White: Manifestations of the Spirit
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Zorki5

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2016, 04:32:01 PM »

The best view on creativity I've come across so far is this (by John Cleese):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qby0ed4aVpo

And I have to say I did not like the essay referred to in the OP, at all... What did it say, basically?

Quote
Creativity is the desire to express ourselves.

OK, fine. All sorts of people want to express themselves, and many (if not most) do so in utterly non-creative ways. Graphomania immediately comes to mind.

Liked the image (illustration) though, a lot.
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amolitor

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2016, 04:34:39 PM »

When you have an essay, you can't just take one sentence out of context and expect to make sense of it.

When you have a poetic, allegorical, essay, x1000.
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Zorki5

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2016, 04:53:31 PM »

When you have an essay, you can't just take one sentence out of context and expect to make sense of it.

When you have a poetic, allegorical, essay, x1000.

I first wanted to write "I do not agree with that essay", but then opted for "I do not like it", as that expresses my view on it better.

What did John Cleese say in his 30+ minute presentation? "Play with your ideas, allocate some time for that play, and do not be afraid to make mistakes in the process." Here, I summarized it for you.

That essay? You are quite right, I cannot easily summarize stuff like "Your perception of everything in your life fills up this reservoir." Next should come the advice to open your third eye, inhale prana (or what you're supposed to do with prana? I'm not sure), etc.

You see, whenever I see sentences like "I donít think you can learn it, it is rather something that evolves", that, to me, is a clear indication that the person does not know what he's talking about. Or maybe he does, but does know what or how to say about it. Maybe he should have thought about it more before sitting down to right that essay.

Compare that to John Cleese's talk.
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amolitor

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2016, 05:42:21 PM »

The two pieces are each half of the puzzle.

Cleese describes the mechanisms by which our creativity can be allowed to do its work. This is pretty well documented material but he does a nice, if somewhat long winded, job of explaining it. The process is really one of pondering and then of relaxing and doing other things. Repeat as necessary. Think. Walk. Shower. Wash dishes. Think.

Lindbergh leaves these mechanical details out and talks about what Cleese has left out of his talk. In order to function, creativity needs raw material. You need relevant knowledge and experience. You need things to try to jam together as solutions. You need a source of raw ideas, things for your subconscious to chew on.

Where the two overlap is the notion that, ultimately, creativity seems to be just built in. You stuff raw material in. You arrange your life so as to let your creativity operate well. You may even exercise it.

But you don't learn how the machine itself works. You learn only how to improve its performance. Ultimately, it is a black box. It's your unconscious mind. It's you.
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Zorki5

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2016, 06:16:20 PM »

Lindbergh leaves these mechanical details out and talks about what Cleese has left out of his talk.

Can't agree with this interpretation. If I try to explain why, though, I'll end up repeating my previous post, so I'll just leave it at that.

In order to function, creativity needs raw material. You need relevant knowledge and experience. You need things to try to jam together as solutions. You need a source of raw ideas, things for your subconscious to chew on.

Agreed.

But you don't learn how the machine itself works. You learn only how to improve its performance. Ultimately, it is a black box. It's your unconscious mind. It's you.

I'm not a fan of decomposition and/or oversimplification; like, say, love to me is not a mechanism supporting breeding, and passion is not a byproduct of hormonal activity. BUT I still want to know these things. The notion of black box is only useful when you choose not to bother with details, because there are other, more high-level means of achieving the result. But when someone tells me I cannot learn something (as Lindbergh did, and you seem to be inagreement with him) because it's a black box (as you said) -- excuse me, I need to open that box then, ASAP.

So let's agree to disagree.

P.S. Speaking of black boxes that are "unconscious minds"... I'd recommend this excellent book by Jeff Hawkins. Although you may not appreciate it as much as I did.
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amolitor

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2016, 06:35:38 PM »

Well, if you want to know about the "black box" our best guess is something like "it's a massive neural network/parallel computing apparatus, several orders of magnitude larger than anything we can build, synthesizing (using methods we do not understand) massive numbers of candidate solutions out of the raw material, the experience and knowledge we have stored up, and testing them for fitness as solutions (using methods we do not understand)"

There's MRI data showing which areas of the brain light up (and boy do they light up) when these processes are under way. What's actually going on in there is a bit murky.

Most likely there are no intermediate levels of explanation. There's the high level description, and there's the thing itself. So it is with much of biological/evolved systems.
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Zorki5

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Re: Another View on Creativity
« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2016, 06:47:52 PM »

Most likely there are no intermediate levels of explanation. There's the high level description, and there's the thing itself. So it is with much of biological/evolved systems.

Half of the value of Jeff's book (to me) is that it explains, quite in detail, those intermediate levels. I simply wouldn't recommend that book if the only thing it talked about was biology.

See chapter 4, on memory and memory/prediction patterns; it explains quite a lot.
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