Thursday, February 2, 2012

Creativity And Its Privileges

Being a creative person has its privileges, let's face it. The fact that we're all creative in one way or another doesn't seem to register with a lot of people who spend their lives in chosen professions that don't require a lot of imagination or creativity, and they count creativity as a process involving the arts, literature, music, etc. without seeing what creativity they bring to their own lives in other areas.

This came home to me a few years ago with my husband. He's an engineer and he must bring his own ideas about designs etc with the added knowledge of load structure etc. to keep the project from collapsing. He has or had because he's retired now, ideas out of his head to create ides and solutions and make sure they worked. His creativity required a great deal more discipline and specificity than most areas. A school teacher is a prime example where she must use creativity to teach young people in a fresh and effective way. The lawyer must get creative in order to do the best job for his client. His failure to a good job can affect his clients freedom or even life and death. I could go on. The point I want to make is that this creativity exits in a box as it were, it's parameters are tight. There are rules in their creativity, certain boundaries that can't be stepped over, even in the name of creativity. The worst example of this kind of control over creativity existed years ago in Russia where art and music and literature had to reflect the politics of their country. Many great artists fled Russia, as they have other oppressed countries, because of these restrictions.

Yet, even under those circumstances, when the artist's very heart and soul was being squashed, and their work discredited, people held them up to a very high esteem. Those creative giants could say or show things within the heart of men, that others could not. Their esteem was deserved.

But what about us, writers here in America? Writing is a 'have to' thing for most of us, but sometimes, we demand more accolades than our work demands. We lean on our rights as creative artists. Do you know who I am? some irate writer might exclaim to a hapless waitress or busboy who hasn't a clue because it's her/his first book and it just isn't making a major impact on their world.

I think we need to thank God for our creative forces, be humble for having them and enjoy the privileges that go with it. What are those creative privileges? We get to do something we love doing and we have an audience for it, which makes us feel empowered enough to keep on. I think that's privilege enough.


Patricia Kiyono said...

What a great reminder for us. We are so privileged, and we need to be thankful.

T L Doezema said...

Yes, thanks for that reminder. I often don't realize how much creativity I do use in my day job, and the difference it can actually make in my client's lives.