In my few years in the creative business, I have learned two lessons more than others:
- There are two types of ‘creative’ people in the world: those by designation and those by nature
- ‘Creativity’ is the most bastardised word in the business
Both of which bring us to the fated reality of the business in general, that we have a creative product that is more a product than it is creative.
At its core, the problem is that we have come to define creativity as ‘original, out of the box ideas’. Ideas that are interesting to us, and ideas we would not have thought of non-creatively.
But the truth is that creativity; is the ability to create something that does not exist before.
We leave that by the wayside and pursue the use of creativity for mere cosmetic improvement of preexisting solutions. Which are perhaps then filtered through several layers of verification: with sieves large and small, and what we are finally; most often than not – left with, is a substance that has neither content nor personality.
But it does check all the boxes.
The use of creativity for cosmetic and superficial improvements rests in a fundamental fear and incapacity for the unknown, the better and the truly new.
In truth, it is the difference between envisioning a faster horse, or an automobile.
But it is reduced to an excuse for having something that looks new, but is fundamentally the same.
It is an excuse for having nothing extraordinary. But just good enough.
It is your excuse for putting a funny, insightful video in your presentation but never changing the way you work.
It is your excuse for having beautiful slides. That lack in real content.
It is your excuse for having a website that invites the visitor, and speaks of lofty visions with beautiful words but is a facade to an organisation that counts only its bank roll in the end of the month.
True creativity is its own ends.
But it has been reduced to the means of being barely interesting. Almost relevant. Spineless. Or worse yet: just pretty.
Image credit: banksy