Georgia Mansur: Cultivating Creativity

The beauty of wearing many hats in the world is the rich opportunity to see things from several different perspectives. Having lived in the country and earning our family income from the land for most of my life, I feel the ‘Farmer’ hat has given me a new scope on the cyclical and rhythmic nature of what is possible in Art and indeed, in Life.

The progression of problem solving and forward planning necessary to be a successful farmer is very much like the creative process~ whether you are directly an artist or a fellow creative problem solver, I hope what I am going to share with you today will assist you in your creative ventures and goals.

  • DANIEL SMITH Alizarin Crimson
  • DANIEL SMITH Cadmium Red Medium hue
  • DANIEL SMITH Cadmium Yellow Deep Hue
  • DANIEL SMITH Carbazole Violet
  • DANIEL SMITH Cobalt Blue
  • DANIEL SMITH French Ultramarine
  • DANIEL SMITH Indanthrone Blue
  • DANIEL SMITH Moonglow
  • DANIEL SMITH Neutral Tint
  • DANIEL SMITH Opera Pink
  • DANIEL SMITH Phthalo Turquoise
  • DANIEL SMITH Quinacridone Gold
  • DANIEL SMITH Quinacridone Magenta
  • DANIEL SMITH Raw Umber
  • DANIEL SMITH Transparent Red Oxide
  • DANIEL SMITH Lemon Yellow

We have the power to create and/or rewrite our own possibilities and experiences.

Creative thinking can be consciously broken down into a process of 5 steps and this is where it gets interesting…. I will add a 6th step here as I believe that we can take something from the farming experience that will set us up for future successes.

The 5 Steps are:

    Identify the problem to be solved: planning a quilt, designing a landscape or learning a new medium. Nothing creative will happen until you identify what you want to do.
    Evaluate possible solutions. Here you research possibilities, considering what you have done previously with similar problems or what others have done. You make sketches, plan color schemes, and establish boundaries for your creative activity. This is the thinking stage of your project.
    Put the project on the shelf for a while. Your unconscious mind sorts and assimilates the information you accumulated in the preparation phase like a computer. This stage may only take minutes, while you set up to work or take a coffee break. (This is what I call Percolating stage~ if you are a tea drinker then maybe you would call this ‘steeping’) Then again, it may take much longer for a fully realized solution to surface. Sometimes it comes to you when your mind is doing something else (like driving, talking on the phone, or when you are brushing your teeth or taking a shower).
    The solution becomes immediately apparent. This is not inspiration, but the result of your earlier thinking~ although it sometimes seems amazing when the insight suddenly does come through. (Maybe that is where the lightning bolt metaphor comes from).
    Once the breakthrough has occurred, a resolution step completes the cycle or process. You are ready to try your solution and see how it works.
    Is about tying up of loose ends to finish strong~ evaluating what worked, what didn’t, and taking notes on how you could improve next time. You are creating a solid platform to begin again with renewed energy, knowledge and experience from the growing season or problem-solving activities. You are already thinking about the next crop/project and planning ahead to ensure your groundwork has been an investment in YOU and your productivity and creativity, making it much easier to repeat and build on your recent success. Success breeds confidence, confidence breeds more success!

I am sure you have all experienced this creative process to some degree but perhaps were not conscious to the stages of development your brain was going through. Knowing what is happening and deliberately guiding yourself through the process is very helpful to progress your ideas and bring them to creative fruition~ an abundant harvest on all fronts!

Creative people see opportunity in ‘failures’, misfires, and things that didn’t turn out quite like they had imagined…. In fact they are adept at spinning that so-called ‘negative’ around and using it to springboard into new possibilities and creative solutions.

So now it’s up to YOU to rewrite your own creative possibilities…. Like a farmer you will prepare the soil, plant the seed, water, cultivate and feed your creativity

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