“I’m gonna stop riding the brakes”

-Spoon’s Mathematical Mind is very fittingly playing as I write this post, so it seemed right that they get the title.

It’s funny how you can hear things and never forget them, even though you quickly forget where you heard it. That’s how I feel about this nugget of information I learned, I think, in an advertising class. It sticks with me. I take extreme comfort in it. It was the definitions of creativity and novelty in comparison with each other. Creativity, in this hazy memory, was defined as creating something new in relation to yourself. Novelty was defined as creating something new in relation to everyone.

Ridiculous example commencing: a man grows up secluded in a cabin in the woods. One day inspiration strikes — he will combine two seemingly incompatible toppings in order to create a surprisingly delicious sandwich. He celebrates his ingenuity by dancing in his cabin while a child somewhere else takes yet another PB&J out of his lunchbox and begrudgingly eats his oh-so-typical lunch.

The guy living in the woods is still creative. He hadn’t been exposed to that idea and thought of it on his own. He still gets props even though the rest of the world isn’t impressed by his invention.

I’m not usually a person who looks for an easy way out. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t stretch ourselves in terms of our own capacity. I just enjoy that the price of entry- in terms of creativity- has been lessened. Someone else may have already considered what to you is a startling revelation. And that’s ok.

I grabbed a drink with my friend Roshan Murthy last night. Roshan is one of the 12 graduate film students accepted to UT last year. He’s very, very talented. We sat there and compared notes on how we approach a new project. We compared notes about the fear and insecurity that usually plagues us along some step of the way. It’s the burden of working in a creative field, especially one that is subjective. Aaron Strout addressed it in his latest blog post, the important thing is to start.

One idea that enables me to get going is this metaphorical flipping of my blinders- it just has to be new to me. That’s not to say I’m not aiming for greatness, for novelty. But when a blank page is glaring me down, it’s the idea that anything new I can create counts for something that allows me to pick up the pen.

I’m not alone in this thought either. Many of you have probably seen this video but it’s worthy of a repeat viewing.

It’s Johanna Blakely talking about how IP rights, copyright in particular, doesn’t play in the fashion industry. I loved the graph at the end– industries w/ copyright protection vs. those without. It makes sense. Not to mention that everyone is somehow influenced by their surroundings, which is already made up of things created by others. Being open and honest about being impacted by other people’s designs makes a whole lot more sense than denying it.

So, in conclusion, it’s creativity that allows for novelty to occur in the first place. Allons-y, it’s time to create.


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