Sunday, April 3, 2011

More on Creativity...from a couple of different angles

Firstly, thanks to those who responded to my plea in the last blog post.  

I'm sure you will have noticed that some people are more creative than others.  While we can't apply this to people's occupations - I am sure there are creative tax accountants and auditors - there is a popular belief that there is a link between creativity and mental illness.  The "artistic temperament" is well known. This link has been the subject of academic studies, but the results are still not conclusive.  

There is an interesting article here that's worth looking at  I found this paragraph resonated with me: 

"The ability to see the world in an unconventional manner and to adopt perspectives not commonly shared can be both a blessing and a curse. Many creative individuals find themselves outside of the mainstream of both thought and method. As a result, they can experience periods when they feel unaccepted, misunderstood, and painfully alone. It is this reality that Don McLean sought to capture in his musical tribute to Vincent Van Gogh."

What about you? Do you ever feel like that? I don't consider that I have a mental illness, but I do feel I'm not "mainstream".  

Let's look at a different angle again - is your creative work given the respect by your friends and family that you think it should have?  Have you experienced people dismissing what you do as unimportant, or not a real job, or just playing around? Have you been made to feel that you're wasting your time?


  1. Sorry its been a while I like the idea of being considered 'different'. We are all born creative, be it cooking or gardening or our textile art. It's just that some of us like to express and share our skills and therefore we appear to stand out from the crowd - to be different! Sometimes I do feel I have a 'mental' issue - depression is after all an illness. I do seem to do my 'best' work when I am low but produce more when I am up. A lot of people look at my work and ask - why do you make costumes that no one is ever going to wear? I just do it because I just do it! God wants me to make them so I do! THey excite me and others to try new skills. My ex husband used to ask 'what's it supposed to be?' now you can see why he is an ex !!!! :-) I create because I was born a creative!!

  2. I love Terry's art professor story in the comments on your last post, I think we lose so many skills that we had as children. I recently took my three year old grandson to a ruined castle and am sure he was listening to the stories in the stones.

    Hmm, I do have a mental illness, is that why I create? It's certainly why I create mayhem sometimes! The mental illness/creativity discussion is an interesting one. Does the illness allow us to break out from the normal restrictions of life?

    Love this blog Shirley, Lis x

  3. You are quite correct, "... there are creative tax accountants and auditors." But you're looking in the wrong places. The ones who are known to have been practising creative accounting/auditing are in jail.

    People dismiss what I do as being unimportant and not being a real job - because I do not get paid for it. It is thought that my time is wasted "working" for a non profit which is not financially able to pay its volunteers (e.g. reimburse them for their time or even for mileage). It takes a fair amount of creativity to think of different events which promote, advertise and publicize without a budget.

    janeyknitting AT yahoo DOT ca
    (Change caps to symbols and lose the spaces.)