Creativity is part of your job but you are sometimes struggling to boost it? Here are our best three tips to help you.
1. Go for a walk
Stanford researchers found that when you walk – especially outdoors – you improve your creativity. So if you are tired of being repeating in your studio, just get outside and go for a walk.
I am not going to teach you that: as you know, movement indeed has to deal with creativity. It is why stretching is essential: it wakes your body up, and gives you a feeling of well-being. Also, when you move in the space, you get aware of what is around you, of your environment and, surprisingly, spatial limits boost your creativity. You experiment it when you dance: indeed dancing puts you alone with your body and makes you feeling it: its abilities but also its limits, and what you can do with them.
So the moment when you feel that your body is perfectly awake means that it is now time for your mind to start thinking – and who knows, maybe creating? So go strolling at a comfortable pace so you can really unplug your brain and let it wander. It is the only way to make some space for new ideas to get in. Amusingly, it is always when you do not focus on creation that you become the most creative! So just enjoy the sweet happiness of meditation…
Don’t be afraid of coercion
Isn’t weird to say that coercion boosts creativity? Well, according to Kant, it is the case. “In darkness, the imagination works more actively than in broad daylight”. Indeed obstacles, boundaries and difficulties seem to push us to struggle to find a way through it, in order to overpass them and get free of them. Facing deprivation and experimenting absence, we are usually more likely to use our imagination and cleverness. Great things never come from comfort zones. As the famous dancer Twyla Tharp once said, ‘creativity is an act of defiance’.
Artists of all times experimented the ‘voluntary artistic constraints’ in order to create. And just look at the results… Look at French writer Georges Perec for instance, who succeeded in designing a whole novel of more than 300 pages, La Disparition, without any ‘e’! He achieved this amazing work thanks to nothing but his imagination. Indeed creativity requires imagination, and imagination is stimulated by rules or coercion. Imagination is like a stream that would fray a path through the stones that hinder its way. So do not hesitate to follow Kant’s advice and plunge into darkness to create a very special choreography.
Look up to mentors
It is foolish to say the greatest creators start from nothing. They all have mentors and seek inspiration from others’ work. So don’t believe you are a superhero and just get humble. Learn from others. Learn from their mistakes and their success. It is the best advice most entrepreneurs can give. And as a choreographer, you are a kind of entrepreneur: creation is your reason for being…
If your mentors are great and unreachable super stars like famous choreographers or even novelists, find them through their works. If your mentors are simply part of your friends and family, well, all the better! Go and talk with them. Take advantage of their knowledge and advices.
Now you know. Good luck with your next choreography…