I’m back in London after 5 days in Toronto with a heavy cold. I blame it on too much time spent in airconditioned rooms at the Improv conference. Among the highlights of the last day of the event was a great session on creativity with Alain Rostain and Cynthia Oelkers. Alain showed us a great exercise in which two people draw a picture taking turns to add features. What results is a bit of what I’d call social creation, something unique which neither individual could claim as their own.
There was a good discussion about “orginality”. The deeper meaning of originality is “from the origin” – in other words something from within oneself; this is not about coming up with something deliberately different; instead it’s about coming up with something true. Thus the person in a meeting who speaks against the consensus, voicing a deeply felt objection is being original – but a lot of creativity training would say they are just saying no.
I love the idea of promoting this kind of orignality, very different from a frantic search for what may often be only passing novely. It ties back to my own excitement in promoting authenticity in work.