Tag Archives: nurturing your creativity

Yet Another Depressed Cat on the Internet

The latest Young’s Seafood ad features a cat called Malcolm who’s tormented by the delicious  gastronomic fishy ready meals that his owners have prepared.

This ad has clearly been inspired by another miserable cat – the French existentialist, Henri. He’s so popular he got his own Youtube Channel – HenriLechatNoir. Here’s my favourite Henri video

There’s 2 points I want to make about this. (the first, serious, the second, less so)

Firstly, Imitating what you admire is perfectly normal and indeed essential in every creative activity. My favourite quote on creativity is by Voltaire

“Originality is nothing but judicious imitation”

It’s so true. To come up with a new idea you need to keep your ears and eyes open and imitate what inspires you. That’s what musicians do. That’s what artists do. And clearly it’s what ad agencies do. So to kickstart your creativity, fill your brain with external stimulation and steal shamelessly.

Secondly, our obsession with cats never ceases to amaze me. Where would the Internet be without cat videos? Probably about half the size. If you’re a fan, there’s a series of Internet Cat Video Festivals in 2015. It originated in 2012 in the USA, but now it’s gone global. For example there’s an event in Perth this weekend and in Glasgow in February. So if you’ve got a cool, entertaining cat – it’s not too late to enter.

7 Ways to Nurture Your Creative Spirit

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Enhancing your creativity is a lifelong journey, but how can you do give it a boost? Here’s a few suggestions

1. Find a Creative Outlet

Drawing, writing, flower-arranging, photography. It doesn’t matter what it is. We all need a focal point for us to channel and express our creative energy. So, take up your favourite hobby, learn more about it and get going!

 2. Increase Your Output

Creative people are doers as well as thinkers. The only way to develop your creativity is to increase your output. To come up 1 brilliant idea you need a lot of ideas in the first place. To invent 1 new product you need many prototypes.

3. Carry An Ideas Book

Ideas come to you in odd places at unusual times. In the shower, sitting on the bus. Make sure you capture the eureka moment as soon as it occurs, otherwise you may lose it altogether. Be it your favourite notebook or your favourite app, make sure it’s your constant companion.

4. Relax

When you relax, your subconscious mind gets to work and ideas pop into your head. It’s impossible to be stressed and creative at the same time. Listen to music on headphones, lie in the sunshine, go for a swim, ride your bike.

5. Get Fit

Exercise can contribute to creative output as it increases oxygen in the blood which is delivered to the brain. Also, certain types of exercise such as running, walking or swimming can create meditative rhythms and help you relax. (see point 4)

6. Get Regular Fresh Input

Routine is the enemy of creativity. Your mind needs fresh stimulation to get new ideas and new perspectives. Aim to do something different every day and seek out new experiences. Listen to a different radio station, visit new places, order something that you’ve never tried before

7. Use Creative Tools and Techniques

There’s hundreds of creative techniques you can use. When you get stuck, try some out. For example there’s Mind Mapping or there’s the Creative Whack Pack.

This is just a snapshot of some of the things you can do to help nurture your creativity. If you’ve got any more suggestions, I’d love to hear from you.