rachelcoker



How to Be Creative: Part One

I’m really bad at solving problems. Math and science were never my strong points. My mom talks a lot about how satisfying math can be. About the buzz you get when you figure out the solution, and solve the problem. I don’t get a buzz. I get a headache.

I’ve always just been better at creative subjects, anyway. History and writing and music were always my favorite subjects. I enjoyed putting together visual reports and crafting descriptive reports. Anything that involved using your imagination was a plus.

Anyway, I’ve had some people ask me lately how I manage to stay creative, whether writing or taking photos. How do I think of new ideas and execute them? And how can they do it too?

So, I made a list of five ways to be more creative, no matter what it is  you want to do:

1) Be Inspired

Think outside the box. If you’re searching for inspiration for, say, a book, look outside of books. I’m one of those fanatics who is a huge advocate for the arts. Seriously, if you are looking for something to inspire you for creativity, lots of times you don’t have to walk further than your closest museum or library. Expand your horizons. When I was younger, I never thought I enjoyed modern art. I thought it was messy and pointless. But as I got older, I decided to study it and see what I could learn. What I discovered astounded me. Modern art was just brimming with emotion and passion, that inspired me to live my life more fully.

Photography is also very inspiring, I think. I keep folders on my computer of images I come across that boost my creativity and give me ideas for stories, photoshoots, etc. Vintage photos are especially effective, I find. Stumbling across a photo of an old bench under a vibrant tree once inspired an entire scene in one of my books.

Another great way to be inspired is by watching beautiful movies. My friends and I always argue about which version of Pride and Prejudice is better–the BBC or the Keira Knightley version–and I will always side with the new one. Why? Because it is beautiful to watch. It inspires me to think beautifully and make beautiful things. It’s just that simple. Movies can have a profound influence on the way you create. At least in this modern age.

2) Listen to Good Music

I have playlists on my computer that I pull up when I’m writing a specific scene. For example, I have a whole playlist dedicated to the best melancholy music ever, for when I’m writing an especially depressing scene. Eva Cassidy, Evanescence, and Lang Lang are some of the artists on it. Then I have peppy songs to listen to when I’m working on something upbeat. One thing I’m always against is anything “mainstream”. I prefer indie artists and oldschool music from the ‘good old days’. Eclectic music inspires interesting work. Or at least that’s my opinion. Whatever I’m listening to always influences the style of my writing, or photo editing, or thinking.

Check back for Part Two tomorrow!

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