written by
Tom Schwarz
Tom Schwarz
Food for Thoughts

Creativity without effectiveness is just art

Creativity without effectiveness is just art

Adapted somewhat liberally from the Jef I. Richards quote: “Creativity without strategy is called art.” Should advertisers and brand builders now be asking themselves whether they are creatives or artists? What is certain is that the two are completely different. In order to understand what art is and what it means, you would need to write a much longer article than this. And at the end you still wouldn’t know the answer.

So let's take the concept of creativity. Wiki says that the word creativity refers primarily to a person's ability to be creative or inventive. The idea that creativity is only associated with professions or activities in the visual and performing arts is wrong. Aha!

Furthermore there is also a distinction between everyday and exceptional creativity. Exceptional creativity is outstanding, the work of geniuses. Everyday creativity is the creativity that can be observed in most people (for example, the ability to improvise when cooking). The crossover is almost painfully subjective. Both types develop as a result of talents, knowledge, ability, intrinsic motivation, personality traits and supportive environmental conditions.

Many ask: “Can you learn creativity?”. Wrong question. We should rather ask: “When did we stop remembering to be creative?”  We had the greatest creative abilities when we were children. Completely inconspicuous objects were enough to invent stories and create new worlds. Researchers predict that at some point logical thinking paired with learned knowledge superimposes itself onto the childlike and creative senses. Inspiration versus learned knowledge.

Since traditional processes are known to always create traditional products, these days there are a multitude of techniques that are designed to encourage creative thinking: brainstorming, mind mapping and design thinking, to name only a few. But actually it's all about breaking away from traditional models of thought and remembering what it was like to be a child.

Throughout all this lateral thinking, however, we must not forget that advertising is always designed for a specific purpose and must be equally revered by both the brand and the public so as to raise brand or product awareness.

Otherwise you have to be creative in a different way:  in coming up with excuses.