With this post I am beginning an exciting, brand new series. One of the purposes of this blog is to encourage and enhance creativity. As I learn, I hope that you will learn right along with me.
So I am interviewing people in my life who have inspired me creatively, and have taught me a thing or two along the way. Each person you will meet in this series has been a creative influence on me in one way or another. I have come up with seven identical questions that I will ask each participant.
These people have colored outside of the lines. They have had a way with words. They have written songs, and books, and blogs.
It’s my pleasure to introduce to you my first participant. Tim Wesemann is a friend of mine from our days together at Concordia Seminary in St. Louis. Tim has since become a professional writer and speaker. Check out his web site called FoolishWords. It’s a model of creativity.
Tom: Define creativity.
Tim: When leading seminars on creativity I’ve felt obligated to share a definition, but I avoid it. The variables seem too great. I haven’t discovered or decided on one definition that hits the mark square on. So I’ll also avoid the question here!
Tom: When did you first realize that you were “creative”?
Tim: I honestly can’t remember discussions about creativity or placing that label (in a good way) on others during the first twenty yeas of my life. In my final years of college I began to realize I had been blessed with a measure of creativity usually because others told me I was creative! (Ed. Take note parents, teachers, and those who work with children!)
Tom: How do you cultivate your creativity?
Tim: I go to the drink aisle at the grocery store and pick up the variety pack of creative juices and guzzle those while reading articles, blogs, or books on creativity. There’s also something about film, theater, and music that works for me.
Tom: How do you handle a creative block?
Tim: Getting away from my desk or surroundings is usually the first step. Observing the creative giftedness of others often helps – watching a movie (in the theater, not at home), reading, enjoying the work of a musician, listening to a comedian, observing God’s creativity in His creation, etc. Another option is eating. Going out to lunch by myself with a pen and paper often works. At one point I exercised regularly and that got the creative juices flowing. Unfortunately, I could never remember everything bombarding my brain when I finished the workout. So I felt it best to give up exercising and went with the eating option mentioned earlier. And prayer can always play a part in whittling the block down to the shape of wheel so things can start to roll again.
Tom: When and where do you do your most creative work?
Tim: As a writer I’m almost forced to do it in front of my computer so I can capture those creative thoughts and record them. But I don’t like the idea of forcing creativity…yet it seems that when I’m writing the creativity flows most fluidly. I’m much more creative at night than in the morning.
Tom: Who is your “creative inspiration”? Why?
Tim: Oh my. It changes frequently. I get hooked on one person and suck him or her dry until I find someone else. I jump from one to another.
Tom: What advice do you have for aspiring “creatives”?
Tim: Observe and appreciate creativity in areas outside your own interests or giftedness. Spend more time with little children. The way they look at and respond to situations makes adults look rigid and boring. Spend time with other creative people. Take whatever is in front of you and look at it from different angles. You might be surprised what you see. Finally, it may seem obvious, but read Tom Eggebrecht’s blog regularly.
Thanks for the plug, Tim!
How would you respond to Tim’s ideas about creativity?